A special feature of the Gropius Bau is its location. It is an important point of reference for the programme and educational projects. The opening up of the institution for its various neighbours is the main aim. Here, accessibility and exchange go hand in hand.
The Gropius Bau is located between historical sites, government buildings, tourist attractions and offices. This environment is not an ordinary “neighbourhood” with every day, neighbourly life. Therefore, exchange with the Gropius Bau’s neighbourhood extends into Kreuzberg’s residential areas with the aim of bringing various facets of life in this area into the building. In order to reach this goal, a research process was initiated.
This neighbourhood research is an attempt to create a vibrant and lively connection between the neighbourhood and the Gropius Bau. We regularly go on walks with people from social initiatives and organisations in the immediate vicinity of the Gropius Bau. The focus is personal and emotional perspectives, but also the history of the city. According to the saying “the way is the goal”, we allow ourselves to be guided by impressions, experiences and stories, and create space and time for inspiring encounters. In this way, we hope to gradually build bridges that draw closer and thus create a more open, “bigger” home for art and culture.
Cooperation Partner Yeşil Çember
This education work is fundamentally collaborative, comprising of current and future collaborations with intercultural, intergenerational and queer neighbourhood initiatives. In 2019, the neighbourhood exchange between the Gropius Bau and the non-profit intercultural organisation Yeşil Çember (Turkish for Green Circle) began with a small urban garden jointly realised in the Gropius Bau’s carpark. Since then, Yeşil Çember has accompanied us on the path to creating access for Turkish-speaking communities in Berlin.
The association Yeşil Çember (pronounced as Yeschil Tschember, Turkish for Green Circle) was founded in 2006 by its current leader, Gülcan Nitsch. The aim is to raise awareness amongst, and engage Turkish-speaking people in Germany with regard to cultural and ecological diversity. To aid in this, Yeşil Çember translates, modifies and creates Turkish or bilingual informational material, and organises events, workshops, campaigns and excursions. Networking and advisory politics, as well as business and science, are also part of the association’s field of activity.
One of the aims of community projects at the Gropius Bau is greater accessibility for different visitors; breaking down language barriers and thus creating individual access to art and culture for Berlin’s residents and visitors. We are beginning to work on this based on our research with Turkish communities in collaboration with Yeşil Çember. Şehnaz Layıkel regularly translates selected texts on our current exhibitions for our Turkish-speaking visitors.