Philippe Parreno, Anywhen, 2017 (film still)
Gropius Bau

Philippe Parreno
Until 5 August
Ana Mendieta, Creek, 1974
Gropius Bau

Ana Mendieta
Until 22 July
Welt ohne Außen
Gropius Bau

Welt ohne Außen
8 June to 5 August

Dear visitors,

I am delighted to address you as the new director of the Gropius Bau, and it is a great pleasure for me to be taking over as director of the exhibition hall. In past years, I have always had the good fortune and opportunity to work together with artists to develop new exhibition formats that invite, inspire, seduce and challenge audiences to actively engage in dialogue with art. I would now like to continue this quest in Berlin and, together with my team, create a collective space for audiences and artists that fosters a desire for discovery.

Given the museum’s eventful history and the variety of institutions located here over the years, we view the Gropius Bau as an open framework for engaging with a wide range of artistic ways of thinking and their social implications. Now, over the next few months, we would like to undertake several architectural interventions to allow additional light into the building and, in accordance with heritage protection laws, open it up spatially. In addition to the exhibition spaces, the restaurant and bookstore will also be updated. In 1981, the Gropius Bau was reopened to the public in the form of a raw building shell. We would like to tap into this unconventional tradition and, aside from a brief period during which the museum will be closed in March and April, keep the building open for you during renovations and invite you to visit us and enjoy the programme.

The Gropius Bau, today named after its architect, opened its doors to the public for the first time in 1881. Designed in Renaissance style, the building housed various institutions and collections, such as the Museum of Decorative Arts and the School of Decorative Arts with its numerous artist studios and workshops. Following the maxim of “Walking in the Artist’s Mind,” we will bring studios back into the building and make artists a central part of the programme as contributors. I am particularly pleased that Wu Tsang will be joining us here during our first year at the Gropius Bau and will help influence the development of the museum and its programme.

In addition to the studios, we will continue the tradition of presenting archaeological exhibitions and linking these to current issues and discourses. The Gropius Bau is an institution with a unique history whose prominent location right next to the former Berlin Wall has predestined it to pick up and reflect on the essential themes of our age through current as well as historical artistic positions.

With this in mind, we will host a comprehensive exhibition of Lee Bul in autumn of this year. As a South Korean artist, Lee Bul shares the experience of living in a divided country, and we are certain that her equally inventive, provocative, and influential work will link together for viewers’ numerous ideas on walls and boundary lines of all kinds.

But to start with, I would like to invite you in April to visit our first exhibition on Ana Mendieta. We will present extracts of her multi-layered film work, which has been restored and digitised, the result of several years of research work. The common element is the recurrent use of her own body in dialogue with nature – not least in order to question the demarcation between her and the surrounding land and soil.

I would like to take this opportunity to express my gratitude for the other wonderful exhibitions that will be shown at the Gropius Bau this year, and I am very excited about what awaits us here. The project series Immersion produces at the Gropius Bau an exhibition by Philippe Parreno conceived as a Gesamtkunstwerk, and, under the title “Welt ohne Außen”, Tino Sehgal and Thomas Oberender will bring together artistic positions on immersive spaces since the 1960s. The guest exhibition “Restless Times. Archaeology in Germany” demonstrates that communication and interconnectedness beyond regional borders, with all of its implications, has always been an integral part of society and has fundamentally influenced various facets of life since prehistory. Finally, I would like to take the opportunity to thank Gereon Sievernich for his extraordinary and remarkable work as director of this museum. My gratitude also goes to the team at the Gropius Bau and the Berliner Festspiele, who immeasurably shape and have shaped the direction of this exhibition hall. I am looking forward to our shared journey.

Stephanie Rosenthal


Covered in Time and History: The Films of Ana Mendieta

Until 22 July 2018

Ana Mendieta (1948-1985) is one of the outstanding artistic positions of the 1970s and 1980s. From 20 April to 22 July 2018 the exhibition “Covered in Time and History: The Films of Ana Mendieta” at Gropius Bau will show 23 of Mendieta's multi-layered film works, which after several years of research have been restored and digitised. More information

Welt ohne Außen
Immersive Spaces since the 1960s

Until 5 August 2018

Departing from the Light and Space Movement of the late 1960s, via works by contemporary artists like Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster and Cyprien Gaillard to empathic journalism in a virtual reality, this exhibition spans a broad panorama, featuring a great variety of immersive practices which dissolve categories of viewer and work and diminish the distance between subject and object. More information

Philippe Parreno

Until 5 August 2018

French artist Philippe Parreno sees the medium of exhibition as a living organism that can be set in motion by light, sounds and images. He controls his staged spaces with the help of algorithms that synchronise the behaviour of the objects contained in the room. More information

The Gropius Bau is supported by the Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media

Der Beauftragte der Bundesregierung für Kultur und Medien

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