The Cap­i­tal's Art Scene Shines

With the an­nual Ber­lin Art Week this month, Hilda Hoy ex­plores the rich cre­ative of­fer­ings of Ber­lin and charts the best places to ad­mire some art.

Where Berlin - - CONTENTS -

Ad­mire the rich cre­ative of­fer­ings of the city dur­ing Ber­lin Art Week. BY HILDA HOY

Artists love Ber­lin, and Ber­lin loves art. With a rel­a­tively low cost of liv­ing, a per­mis­sive, lais­sez-faire at­ti­tude, and healthy public fund­ing of the arts, the cap­i­tal has long been a des­ti­na­tion for artists and art-lovers of all stripes. Cre­ativ­ity – and an ap­pre­ci­a­tion for it – has thrived here for many gen­er­a­tions, leav­ing be­hind a ro­bust legacy of mu­se­ums, gal­leries, and pri­vate col­lec­tions that easily ranks among the best in the Western world.

Ev­ery fall, Ber­lin Art Week (15-20 Septem­ber) cap­i­tal­izes on this rep­u­ta­tion with not one but two art fairs that draw artists, gal­lerists, col­lec­tors, and art en­thu­si­asts to dis­cover what the lo­cal scene has to of­fer. Both cel­e­bra­tions are open to the public and pro­vide an over­view of cur­rent art trends as well as a be­hind-thescenes peek of the art mar­ket. The first of these fairs, abc – art ber­lin con­tem­po­rary (www.art­ber­lin­con­tem­po­rary.com), takes place 17–20 Septem­ber at STA­TION Ber­lin, where high-pow­ered gal­leries from around the world un­veil the cre­ative mas­ter­pieces of their best and bright­est artists. Whether you’re an ar­dent col­lec­tor look­ing for your next must-have paint­ing or merely a cu­ri­ous fan, abc of­fers a di­verse con­cen­tra­tion of con­tem­po­rary art un­der one roof.

The smaller Po­si­tions Ber­lin (www. po­si­tions.de) is poised to make its sec­ond

foray at Ber­lin Art Week. Founder Kris­tian Jar­muschek, him­self a lo­cal gal­lerist, in­tro­duced the up­start fair last year in an at­tempt to break abc’s mo­nop­oly, cit­ing his belief that di­ver­sity and breadth can only ben­e­fit the Ber­lin art scene. Sim­i­larly to abc, Po­si­tions brings to­gether lo­cal and in­ter­na­tional gal­leries to present their most cut­ting-edge of­fer­ings, which come to­gether at the spa­cious Arena (p. 56) venue in Kreuzberg.

In ad­di­tion to the two art fairs, a num­ber of spe­cial Ber­lin Art Week ex­hi­bi­tions, per­for­mances, and artist talks are also held in gal­leries, mu­se­ums, and pro­ject spa­ces across the city. Not to be missed is

Ex­tend­edReal­ity, a solo show by dar­ing con­cep­tual artist Alicja Kwade, open­ing on 18 Septem­ber at Haus am Wald­see (p. 44). Rep­re­sented by the very re­spected Ga­lerie Jo­hann König, the Ber­lin-based artist is renowned for her sculp­tural in­stal­la­tions that ques­tion the na­ture of re­al­ity and the sys­tems of or­der we rely upon. Also on Art Week’s pro­gram is STADT/

BILD(Ima­ge­o­faCity), an ex­pan­sive ex­hi­bi­tion tak­ing place across four dif­fer­ent venues. Don’t miss the per­spec­tives

on ur­ban­ism cap­tured at Deutsche

Bank Kun­stHalle’s (p. 44) STADT/ BILD.Xe­nop­o­lis, which presents the city as a liv­ing or­gan­ism in­de­pen­dent of its res­i­dents. The KW In­sti­tute for

Con­tem­po­rary Art (p. 44), mean­while, has ti­tled its con­tri­bu­tion to the four-part ex­hi­bi­tion WelcometotheJungle. From in­door swimming pools in Ja­pan to bowl­ing al­leys in Ber­lin, the show’s works ex­plore imag­i­nary, sub­con­scious places that ex­ist be­yond the tan­gi­ble city we can con­trol. Both shows open 15 Septem­ber.

The re­cip­i­ent of the renowned Käthe

Clock­wise from left: A scene from the 2014 Ber­lin Art Week, a photo col­lage by Di­eter Ur­bach, an event from last year's Ber­lin Art Week, Mwangi Hut­ter's Field­ofJoy (2015) at Deutsche Bank Kun­stHalle's Xe­nop­o­lis ex­hibit, Alicja Kwade's The­o­retis­chesGe­bildeI

(The­o­ret­i­calStruc­tureI), En­gel­bert Kremser's un­re­al­ized de­sign for the Europa-Cen­ter.

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