DISAPPEARING BERLIN | PIGEON FEATHER STICK | Bärenzwinger | 30.07.2019

DISAPPEARING BERLIN, a series of events organised by the Schinkel Pavillon, stages unique Berlin architecture and special urban spaces that are acutely threatened with disappearance for over a year. Next Tuesday, 30 July 2019 from 7 p.m. the next evening will take place at DISAPPEARING BERLIN in the Bärenzwinger in the Köllnischer Park.

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Poster Disapearing Berlin – Pigeon Feather Stick

With performances, installations and concerts, the Schinkel Pavilion moves for the first time into urban space – towards unique localities and iconic architectures that are about to be demolished, privatized or converted after decades of shaping the cityscape. Georgia Gardner Gray’s new piece “Pigeon Feather Stick” follows the title-giving protagonist through the dream landscape of his own origins and physical forms of existence. Part leper and prehistoric man, part beatnick, war veteran and bird – Pigeon Feather Stick is a wildly undefined mixture of man and animal. Although extremely fertile, it is unclear whether he is just fat or can lay eggs. His fleshy friend Non-Binory Sirloin Steak is literally a piece of meat on a hook. By continuously blurring the boundaries between what is ‘natural’ and what is ‘cultural’, Pigeon Feather Stick reveals the disturbing closeness of the two characters. In a recalcitrant manner, his satire warns us of the omnipresent pitfalls of our self-perception. In “Pigeon Feather Stick” humans are useless as animals shitting from trees and monkeys grunting. With Joseph Geagan as Pigeon Feather Stick and Marie Karlberg, Matthew Linde and Steven Warwick. “Pigeon Feather Stick” is the fifth edition of DISAPPEARING BERLIN. DISAPPEARING BERLIN PIGEON FEATHER STICK A PIECE BY GEORGIA GARDNER GRAY

WHEN? Tuesday, 30 July 2019, 7 p.m. Admission, 8 p.m. Performance

WHERE? Bärenzwinger at Köllnischer Park, 10179 Berlin-Mitte Voranmeldung (Reservation) for the Performance until 29 July 2019.

The start of DISAPPEARING BERLIN took place on the 22nd floor of the Postbank high-rise in the 70s architecture of the former canteen: At sunset 16 female guitarists played in front of an impressive Berlin Panorama Julius Eastman’s “Gay Guerrilla”. A construction site directly on the banks of the Charlottenburg Spree becomes the night stage for the international dance collective Young Boy Dancing Group. Steven Warwick stages a river crossing at the Waterloo-Ufer in the southern Friedrichstadt to the hidden house1. Georgia Gardner Gray reflects on the trials and tribulations of human existence in the bear pit in the historical centre. Eli Keszler’s wild percussion improvisations transform the multi-storey car park at Kottbusser Tor into a resonating space; Billy Bultheel, who wrote the music for Anne Imhof’s FAUST, uses tubas and tenors to make the roof of Álvaro Siza Vierias Bonjour Tristesse Wohnhaus at Schlesischer Tor vibrate. A former GDR swimming pool, an old car repair shop, a cult dance club from the past, a power station, office towers from the 70s and 80s, brutalistic buildings – all places where different eras and ideologies have inscribed themselves into the Berlin cityscape over decades.

As a result of the war destruction after the Second World War, modern new building projects were developed within the city as well as large housing estates on the outskirts of the city. The lack of infrastructure there, which could only be built at high cost, led to the large-scale demolition of old buildings in the city districts in order to replace them with new buildings and motorway construction plans. From the mid-1970s onwards, massive resistance among the population stirred up against this so-called “clear-cut redevelopment”. The concept of “cautious urban renewal” was to be the political and practical alternative – visionary urban planning and progressive housing concepts were actively promoted. In contrast, increasing pressure to grow and exploit is omnipresent in the cityscape and threatens once again to decompose the multi-layered foundations of a city at a rapid pace, whose eventful history and complex, often contradictory texture made it so unique and attractive for a long time.

DISAPPEARING BERLIN will be dealing with the past, present and future of Berlin at these locations – focal points of current urban politics – in order to sharpen the view for these changes together with the invited artists*. The city becomes a protagonist, a social body in which the spirit of the times and ideologies emerge as well as social changes and upheavals. Performance, art and architecture enter into dialogue and allow us to relive and re-experience these special places. 

DISAPPEARING BERLIN confronts the sweeping loss of history and face, looking forward as the Collapsing New Buildings, of all people, have dictated: “The new temples already have cracks”, they sing and prophesy: “All only future ruins, material for the next layer”.

DISAPPEARING BERLIN is a series of events organised by the Schinkel Pavillon and is sponsored by the Hauptstadtkulturfonds (Capital City Culture Fund) and the Spartenoffene Förderung der Stadt Berlin (the Open Fund of the City of Berlin).

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