#occupyBerlinBiennale: General concept for 15M/Occupy @7thBiennale: BERLIN group

If after readind this post you’re intersted in taking part of the process please don’t hesitate to join the general mailing list (berlinbiennale@lists.takethesquare.net)


To keep it short, our general aim is still to create an OPEN SPACE for everyone interested in acting politically, thinking critically, improving his/her own skills or – literally –  ‘changing the world’. All in all, the hall we use inside of the KW building should serve as a form of big platform for our movement(s) – from wich one we can do both: act outside on the streets and act inside, getting to know each other, having international exchange, learning from each other, having discussions/asambleas, training ourselves in making (non-violent) resistance. At last, it should serve as a room were we can authentically experiment the way of living we believe is an appropriate one for general social and poltical life, e.g. like we are trying to do it with the asambleas as an example for making decisions in a really democatical way.

It’s important to especially highlight the point that we’re not at all interested in exhibiting ourselves to any public (‘zoo-effect’) or presenting anything in a professional way to convince someone because of thinking we know ‘the right’ solutions (like we would be the ‘awaked’ ones and the others are still the dumb ones thinking wrong). It’s more about motivating the so called public – what means the people not already protesting or even being aware of their status of being an political subject – to really take part in our activities, to transform from being passive consumers into active human beings, thinking on their own instead of getting taught. The key word we use to talk about in this context is INTERACTIVITY.

As a reaction to the concerns respectively the fear of possibly having too artistic actions during the Biennale, I just like to quote what Igor has written in his last summary to clarify the bigger context, in this case that is the concept of the 7th Biennale in general:   ” Referring to the question of the exhibition. 7. Berlin Biennale will be dedicated to the social/political issues and will combine mostly the direct actions including congresses, city interventions, social actions effecting the German public sphere, the society and the political elite. When not necessary we intent to avoid exhibiting anything which might indicate the artistic object. In some cases there will be the video documentations of the events presented when the actions for instance take place abroad (we have one action arranged in Congo); or – we intend the action to be still present at the Biennale although it has lasted for a couple of days and is over so one cannot participate in it any more.

Then – we will present the documentation of it. In some cases there will be the object which might be considered as the artistic one but only when it refers directly to the social/political idea, is considered by the artist as a vehicle to transmit one or is used by the artist to accomplish the political goals, is considered as the political tool. We will not present objects, installations, photographs or other artistic forms which intent to be the aesthetic representations of the reality. When the final program of the Biennale is ready we will present it to all of you so you know the context in which the 15M/Occupy Movement activities would appear”.


Till now, we’ve splitted into different working groups, caring for specific issues:


– Organizing infrastructure and all the material that is needed for living and working in the hall during the period of the biennale, e.g. food, showers, toilets, internet, computers, .. –


– Organizing and designing the space As planned for now the hall should be divided into different areas, serving for different kind of actions and needs, integrating all activities/projects that suit to the different areas, not just the ones planned by the berlin group (yes, the hall is big, but not infinite). There will be some spacial areas planned for – creative activities (like a theatre perfomance or the preparation of an outdoor action) – permanent artistic installations (of course with ‘political message’) – spontaneous actions – the autonomous university actions (seminars/workshops/discussions space, an open library, maybe a little cinema) – just living – cooking and eating – internet-/computer-based actions (e.g. the livestream or speakers corners) – sleeping (please try to agree with us if coming in a bigger group and need place to sleep) – asambleas -> After having clarified the concrete technical questions the room concept/plan will be spread via mailing list the next days; –


the preparation of different activities has been splitted into two working groups, one for more creative, ‘active ations’, the other one for the more intellectual, ‘mental acitons’.

(3.1) CREATIVE ACTIONS – The creative actions will be consisting of two styles: some will happen outside and their preparation and documentation will happen inside. Others will be practical interactive installations and actions that happen inside the Biennale. –

(3.2) AUTONOMOUS UNIVERSITY   – The Autonomous University is a working group of the non-art part of the 7th Berlin Biennale devoted to sharing skills and knowledge, organizing debate and discussion, and bringing together relevant ideas for movement building. Our activities range from hosting classes on the tensions between capitalism and democracy, to training sessions in direct action techniques, to maintaining a collective open library. More than just a place to critique the existing order, the AU seeks to bring activists from diverse backgrounds together to share their experience and develop new strategies. We aim to provide a platform for self-education, drawing on the contribution of people within the movement, including community members, critical intellectuals, and other guests. – Interested in organizing a project, giving a workshop, screening a documentary, facilitating a discussion or helping to create and maintain the library? So please fill out the attached form – pdf or doc – and send it at both autonomousuniversity@gmail.com AND biennaleproposal@googlemail.com . –


– International Communication – Communication with the people engaged for the Biennale from the KW – Coordinating the different activities: there will be an internet TIMELINE or TIMETABLE/CALENDAR installed asap, in which every group needs to fill in their action (with a short title) at the
concrete time/day/days they want to realize it. This could be a good – and really necessary – way to organize and cooperate, so that in the end there won’t be a total mess up in the hall,
(what would be sad for the energy and work putted into the projects)! Of course we have to plan smart in order to keep it fair – as some acitivist (or rather the most) can’t be on-site for the whole period of the Biennale they need to have priority when more than about 2 or 3 projects
are colliding – please treat the others with respect. Additionally we have to keep in mind that there will be a few activists/artists (like for example some Egyptian activists) at the Biennale anyway who can cooperate with us spontaeously/ take part in our actions, so that it’s
required to stay a little flexible and opened for some processes evolving during the exhibition. –


– Developping all internet-based needs, e.g. the goupware and – soon – a public homepage –



First of all: EVERY activist our group of activists is of course welcome to join the biennale project; one probably can’t emphasize often enough that this is a global movement, what not least seems to be our great chance for really changing OUR present situation. We are up to formulate an open invitation that should be sent to other cities not having been invited yet in order not to exclude anyone. It’s clear that it’s not possible for us – or rather: the KW/BIENNALE – to provide (financial) support to an unlimited amount of people but we should at least try to inform as much people as possible about our acitivities and the possibility to take part.   For getting FINANCIAL SUPPORT or VISAS you’ve got to ask the members of the KW team for Biennale themselves (Sandra, Artur or Igor), they administrate the financial budget for travelling costs.   To get into contact with other activists from different countries or people from the KW easier I just added the list done bye Igor a few weeks ago, If you’re not sure whom to write to just use the general mailing list (berlinbiennale@lists.takethesquare.net), someone will hopefully feel responsible.


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