The New Normal Berlin project is an initiative of Séverine Galiano, Art Consultant and Project Director, in cooperation with Dr. Ingrid Wagner, curator and historian of art, Project Coordinator at the Senate Department of Culture and Europe Berlin the last 29 years. The concept was born, following various exchanges that both women had with artists and art scene actors living in Berlin or elsewhere during the COVID-19 lockdown, in March 2020.
26 ARTISTS FOR A MULTI-MEDIUM EXHIBITION. An open talk about the reflections born during the Pandemic / Covid-19, the dialogue and new vision. As well the streaming and the perspective of art presentation in the digital space.
It is an experimental project in two episodes. One week show in the Haus der Statistik, Berlin, in October 2020, and 2 months online show.The New Normal ?
The Exhibition Concept:
The COVID-19 (Coronavirus-2019) lockdown imposed a poignant new feeling and a clearer view on our civic life, our activities, our aspirations, and our entire lives - for all of us. New parameters popped up in our usual life out of a situation most of us never experienced before, and did not anticipate, poses new challenges. And that crisis isn’t finished yet!
Our abilities to develop answers, or our need to re-adapt, and generate different and new experimental dialogs, that continue the conversations we depend upon to grow our futures, is paramount. This profound change has the real potential to mutilate, and alter, all of our future expressions as human beings.
It is in this situation, where current technologies take a big leap forward, in our ordinary lives. But what about the people who don’t have that easy access to advanced technological platforms, and the means to substitute physical space for virtual space - to create and share a new kind of exhibition experience? What happens when we embark on a constant online streaming approach, enabling a collapse of the virtual world, back into the artist's studios and physical spaces - and vice-versa? Are we tired of the guided tours through empty exhibition rooms? Maybe yes, and maybe no. The visual art audiences are numerous, large, and diverse, we will not please nor displease everyone. But what, if art education would be taken more serious?
This is a decisive moment in human history and society, that exposes the gap that reveals (inside and outside) what is happening in our lives, on so many different levels. The new guide-posts are already differentiating the time before and after this pandemic. The current state of the situation is critical. Is it already now to demarcate the pre and the post?
We in Europe made it with big losses, illness, economic struggles – until now. Ignorant leaders in the world are playing vabanque with their societies and the south – that is the poor states – is suffering even more. Unemployed, cheap workers, children, women, homeless, poor care systems – will they be the losers, like always ?
This crisis takes us all into uncertain territory, which astonishes the world of tranquil water, air and earth. Some intelligent readaptions seem feasible. Changes in society, human solidarity, sustainable resource consumption, and climate change phenomena, are important keywords, also in the challenge to the artworld as an evolving institution.
Therefore, the artwork being shown here, will be related to the important questions, about our current moment, and our abilities to evaluate and recognize the characteristics of this time in several dimensions.
Artists, and all people, working in the art scene are particularly affected by the COVID-19 catastrophe. They feel the undeniable possibility of a complete loss of all opportunities, to survive in their professions, and to share their creations with an appreciative public, through public sphere exhibitions - as their life mission. This crisis is both emotional and existential in all areas of our human existence. The cultural city of Berlin may not lose its social charisma, or fail its historical legacy, as an avant-garde cultural oasis. But the danger is looming!
Artists do not, and art does not exist in a secret vacuum. To create a new and evolved vision is necessary, to reconnect with the extant art world - and the practicing artists. To start a new dialogue, and to comprehend the new challenges is necessary, to understand how we process, proceed, and readapt to these new conditions. Artists, organizers, galleries, clubs, and other cultural initiatives have a life - which is their livelihood. All of these people must be recognized and respected for their contributions and importance to society. Maybe the artists in our show will have questions – maybe they have found answers – how can art be connected to all those questions.
Historically, the arts have demonstrated their resilience. Nothing is ever too easy, or restricted to one way of existing. Fortunately, artists are also equipped with a huge ability and resource for creativity, that has saved many people in crucial moments, throughout human history. There is no need to lose faith in human resourcefulness, and the strength to persist.
In a place that is made to materialize this social interim: Haus der Statistik (the House of Statistics).
A large Berlin experiment based on a community of many, from the pursuit of common good, to 'commons' from self-organized resources and needs-based production, administration, use and from optimism and commitment.
The location for the exhibition is chosen from the consent for this attempt at connectivity and inclusion of various social initiatives. The effort to work together and the careful and environmentally friendly use of resources is also committed to an expanded concept of art.
The involved artists, workshops and creative initiatives are working together with representatives of many departments of the state of Berlin for a new model of dwelling, administrations and working, a permanent place in the center of Berlin, at Alles Anders Platz, aka Alexanderplatz.
This location, through the cooperation with various initiatives located there, is taken seriously. The experience will be enriched by a virtual experience.BACK TO THE NEW NORMAL