Openings / Berlin Art Week – Harun Farocki Retrospective / Claire Fontaine / Alfredo Jaar

El Usman Faroqhi Here and a Yonder: On Finding Poise in Disorientation – El Usman Faroqhi Here and a Yonder: On Finding Poise in Disorientation

Openings at Neuer Berliner Kunstverein on Wednesday, September 13, 6 pm:

Harun Farocki: Mit anderen Mitteln – By Other Means

September 14, 2017 – January 28, 2018 Curators: Antje Ehmann and Carles Guerra

Harun Farocki (1944-2014) is one of the most important and internationally influential German filmmakers. His oeuvre comprises more than 100 experimental and documentary films, essay, short and feature films. However, his complete oeuvre goes far beyond that. Farocki left behind extensive works of film and media theory, still to be discovered, and for decades worked as a lecturer. Since the mid-1990s, he expanded his cinematic practice with video installations in fine art spaces. Farocki was an ethnographer of capitalist living environments, which he dissected and analyzed. Vital to his approach and his oeuvre is the examination of the meaning of images, their genesis, and, in particular, the power structures inscribed in them. In order to pay tribute to the significant oeuvre of Harun Farocki, Neuer Berliner Kunstverein (n.b.k.), in cooperation with Arsenal – Institute for Film and Video Art, the Harun Farocki Institute, Harun Farocki GbR, Savvy Contemporary and Silent Green Kulturquartier, initiated the first comprehensive retrospective of Farocki’s work.

Neuer Berliner Kunstverein is showing the exhibition Harun Farocki: Mit anderen Mitteln – By Other Means, which assembles his film installation works. Simultaneously the first retrospective of Harun Farocki´s complete cinematographic work takes place at the Arsenal Cinema. Dedicated to the question about the influence and permanence of Farocki’s aesthetic and intellectual practice is the event Farocki Now: A Temporary Academy, organized by the Harun Farocki Institute, taking place on several days at Silent Green Kulturquartier, with an opening event at Haus der Kulturen der Welt. Savvy Contemporary develops the group exhibition El Usman Faroqhi Here and a Yonder – On Finding Poise in Disorientation, with Candice Breitz, Ariani Darmawan, Fehras Publishing Practices, Shilpa Gupta, Ho Tzu Nyen, Samson Kambalu, Olaf Nicolai, and Michael Zheng. Verlag der Buchhandlung Walther König, Cologne publishes a multi-volume edition of the writings by Harun Farocki, the first volume being the previously unpublished autobiography. The Harun Farocki Retrospective is accompanied by an extensive lecture program and the educational programs “Großes Kino, Kleines Kino” and “Arsenal Filmatelier”.

Artistic directors of the Harun Farocki Retrospective: Marius Babias and Antje Ehmann Curators of the Harun Farocki Retrospective: Antonia Alampi, Carles Guerra, Tom Holert, Doreen Mende, Bonaventure Soh Bejeng Ndikung, Volker Pantenburg, and Stefanie Schulte Strathaus

The Harun Farocki Retrospective is a project by Neuer Berliner Kunstverein (n.b.k.) in cooperation with Arsenal - Institut für Film und Videokunst e.V., the Harun Farocki Institut, Harun Farocki GbR, silent green Kulturquartier, Verlag der Buchhandlung Walther König, SAVVY Contemporary and Haus der Kulturen der Welt, as part of the Berlin Art Week, supported by the Senate Department for Culture and Europe.


n.b.k. Showroom: Claire Fontaine. The Crack-Up

September 14, 2017 – January 26, 2018 Curator: Kathrin Becker

Claire Fontaine is a collective artist and writer founded in Paris in 2004, she works with sculpture, neon, installation, painting and video. Claire Fontaine explores the problems and paradoxes of capitalism and the experience of foreignness. Through Claire Fontaine’s notion of the ‘ready-made artist’ she also challenges the concept of authorship and questions the forms of artistic subjectivization.

Supported by the Bureau des arts plastiques / Institut français, in the framework of France’s guest of honor appearance at the Frankfurt Book Fair (Francfort en français / Frankfurt auf Französisch 2017)


n.b.k. Facade: Alfredo Jaar. Rosa, Karl, Bertolt, Herbert and the others

September 14, 2017 – August, 2018 Curator: Michaela Richter

Every year Neuer Berliner Kunstverein (n.b.k.) invites contemporary artists to realize an external project on the façade of its building on Chausseestrasse, and thus change the view on the urban space. Working in public space is deeply rooted in the practice of Alfredo Jaar, who since the beginning of his career creates political works that attract attention. His series of graphical diagrams conceived for the n.b.k., entitled Rosa, Karl, Bertolt, Herbert and the others (2017), is an homage to Harun Farocki and his critical view on social conditions, while at the same time it addresses the varied history of Chausseestrasse. As one of the oldest streets in Berlin, it represents a major center of production and business since the 19th century, being the home to a variety of industries throughout history. From 1961 to 1990, the street was divided by the Berlin Wall and marked by a checkpoint. Eight years before the building of the Wall, this border crossing was one of the hot spots of the uprising of 17 June 1953, when about 10,000 striking steel workers were on the march there.

Alfredo Jaar picks up outstanding historical moments such as this and refers to them in his new work, which at the same time names four intellectuals whose thinking deeply influenced Harun Farocki’s work (Rosa Luxemburg, Karl Liebknecht, Bertolt Brecht und Herbert Marcuse)—and in whose biography Chausseestrasse played a role. Fascinated by how many of Harun Farocki’s topics—working worlds and their transformation, domination techniques, the power of the visual and possibilities of opposition—coalesce in the history of Chausseestrasse, Alfredo Jaar has conceived a work that invites viewers to decipher and reflect it.

Image: Harun Farocki, 1968 (Detail), Photo: Irena Vrkljan