Stadtmarken: Chema Alvargonzález, Olaf Metzel, Sissel Tolaas
How do you create works of art for somewhere that does not really exist? The Munich suburb Messestadt Riem, containing the city's trade fair centre, is such a place. People have already moved into some of the new accommodation, but much is still missing - the centre, for example.
'Stadtmarken' (city markers), initiated by kunstprojekte_riem, uses art to draw attention to some prominent features of Messestadt. The first finished works, by Chema Alvargonzález and Olaf Metzel, and an unrealised project by Sissel Tolaas were officially unveiled from 22 to 24 September 2000, along with a media project by Felix S. Huber and Florian Wüst (its partial realisation including an experimental internet set-up) and an exhibition of photographs created by eighteen students from Munich's Staatliche Fachakademie für Fotodesign in connection with Fotoprojekt Messestadt Riem.
'Stadtmarken' is accompanied by a copiously illustrated magazine containing information on the works of art, on the artists involved and on Messestadt past and present. Copies of the magazine are available from the address given below.
'Stadtmarken': Works of art stake out the territory of Messestadt
The works of art shed new light on existing features or draw attention to various intermediate states in the birth of Messestadt. The artists have reacted to formal givens, to the transitional stages between unused land, building sites and the creation of a new suburb. They have also provided residents with points of identification in an environment in which the noise of building activity is omnipresent and a planned landscaped park nothing but a far-off vision. 'Stadtmarken' in no way aims to subject the building sites to aesthetic transfiguration or simply to set up attractive sculptures in the empty spaces. Rather, it seeks to address residents and their concerns, for people are already living here, although the suburb does not yet really exist as such. This state of affairs is clearly a burden, one readily apparent even to outsiders. The history of the airport that once occupied the site, the residents' pride in 'their' new suburb and the daily strain on their nerves caused by living in an unfinished environment combine to form an arena in which the works of art have to assert themselves.
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