Fortress Europe is the name of the exhibition, hold in what was once Berlin’s ”Kühlhaus”. The title refers to poster painting of the exhibition, the artist Mike Spike Froidl’s disturbing and large scale painting of african refugees, taking the fearsome trip across the see to the promised continent. Froidl’s often political paintings draw the backdrop of the entire gallery week at the old Kühlhaus. The title for the exhibition pinpoints the ambiguity and conflicting elements that “Europe” seems to entail these days as well as historically. If Europe seems like a promised land from the outside, what is then the condition from within?


Tuesday night greek-born filmmaker Marsia Tzivara gave her version, showing her socio-political documentary “Burning from the Inside”, on the rise and fortification of neo-nazi movements in Greece and Germany. Bold recordings from demonstrations by the Greek Nazis “Chrisi Avgi” gave an insight into the anatomy of hatred in its most unconditional sense. The documentary painted the picture of an alarming and imaginary fortress of Europe, being upheld by a deepening economical, social and political crisis.


A less political, yet sophisticatedly delivered literary performance was given saturday night by actresses Ingrid Sattes and Natascha Bub. The theatrical reading “HELEN HESSEL – Niemand kann so lieben wie ich” has found its inspiration in the past german and french cultural stronghold that fostered journalist and “vivante” Helen Hessel. Based on texts, statements of witnesses and the literary evidence of the men encountered by Helen, tuesday night’s performance brought into light the multi-faceted kaleidoscope of a wildly lived life of Helen Hessel. A life that was to form the role of Catherine in Henri-Pierre Roché’s book “Jules et Jim” – later to be adapted into the iconic film of the same name by Francois Truffaut.


In itself Gallery Week at the Kühlhaus’ explores both its newfound potential, a space for exploration and debate through artistic practice, thereby being a memorial “in motion” for what was once a part of the industrial fortress of Europe.

Still not to miss and coming up at the gallery weekend in Kühlhaus Berlin:

– 1.5. – 18 Uhr und 20:30 Uhr  gruppe / hrtz und 1.5. – 3.5. 2015
Kurzfilme von Juliane Henrich, Markus Ruff, Clarissa Thieme, Juliane Zelwies

2.5. – 20 Uhr Film
Die Fotografen Bernd und Hilla Becher

3.5. – 18 Uhr Performance Books in Motion
Idee und Performance: Janine Schneider (Tanz) und James Etherington (Lesung), 
Dauer 25 min