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Filtered by Eisenhüttenstadt

It’s easy to offer culture to people in Berlin, where there are always some visitors who will come to see the show—even if it is extremely difficult, or extremely strange. But what about "forgotten" cities like Eisenhüttenstadt? Will people there also come to see art?

Eisenhüttenstadt is a small city, 120 kilometers away from Berlin, in eastern Brandenburg. It came into existence in 1950 as "Stalinstadt," a socialist model city in the GDR, and many of its inhabitants were employed at the nearby steel mill (which today belongs to ArcelorMittal, the world’s biggest steel company). Since West Germany absorbed the GDR, the city has been shrinking—after reunification about 20,000 people left. Eisenhüttenstadt doesn’t seem to be a beneficiary of the German transformation. The center of the city is spectacular—with its restored Socialist Realist buildings, open and sunny public squares, and broad avenues—albeit a little deserted. And cultural offerings are limited.

The idea of the project is to open a space in the center of Eisenhüttenstadt and conduct cultural activities there. The program is developed by two Berlin-based art spaces—Artists-in-Berlin-Program/DAAD and me Collectors Room Berlin/Olbricht Foundation—who are challenged to be "filtered," questioned, and present in Eisenhüttenstadt through organizing programming in the city. The idea is to act and try to understand the citizens, their real needs, and the situation in the city. What might this bring, if anything, to the residents? And how will it force the Berlin institutions to re-evaluate their own institutional positions?

by Artur Żmijewski

After the closure of the St. Elisabeth-Church, the Draftsmen's Congress moved to Eisenhüttenstadt, in the Strasse der Republik 37.

Blog on actions and projects of the 7th Berlin Biennale in Eisenhüttenstadt (German only)