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For a long time the European project was considered an obvious development that generated benefits for all parties concerned. The succession of serious crises that move the continent for a decade, endangers this project for the first time seriously. The Brexit could weaken the entire alliance sustainably.
The current situation is so loaded with problems that a positive sign appears necessary. Europe lacks visibility, public presence and positive feedback.
The continuity and stability of the European idea are existentially, especially during this difficult period of time.

This is the background for a light installation on the facade of ST. AGNES in Kreuzberg, which opposes the lack of visibility and presence with a statement for Europe. The project of morePlatz proposes to install the letters EUROPA of 33 fluorescent tubes on the eastern facade of ST. AGNES. The installation should shine in autumn 2016 for half a year, and subsequently may be moved to other locations.

The building of the former church is ST. AGNES with its bold appearance is part of the installation, quasi as a witness and support the idea of Europe. The building was renewed in 2015 and is since then used as exhibition space by the KÖNIG GALERIE who supports the project.

The highly visible installation should act as a strong sign and statement in public space. EUROPA represents the shared values of the European Community, stands for a free society and peaceful coexistence, and therefore for all the common achievements that are often perceived only unconsciously or as a matter of course.

Over the past centuries, the 'old' continent has undergone a development that has improved the lives of people. Democracy, human rights, legal and social state, liberty of movement - everything is based on a more or less continuous development, which previous generations have fought for and built up.

 

 

One of the greatest achievements after the two world wars was the extinction of old enmities, territorial claims and geopolitical expansion of individual nations and of nationalism as an ideology. Germany as a former aggressor plays in this case a special role. Respecting mutual limits was the prerequisite for overcoming them.

The continuous economic boom of the postwar decades allowed the stable period of growth and prosperity, the so called ‚Golden Generation', which lasted until the end of the century. The sequence of crises of the new millennium has put this trend to an end. Although these crises do not originate only in Europe, a growing number of the population makes the EU responsible and blames her, partly from a lack of understanding or knowledge of the context. The Europe-wide shift to the ‚right' is the result. This is a dangerous development. Populists profit from the mistaken belief that a retreat into national borders can solve the current problems.

 

 

In the age of digitalization and global networks it is not possible, to turn back the clock. People who are unable or unwilling to see beyond their own situation must be taken their fear of ‚strangers'. Europe needs to play to its strength and become aware of its advantages again. Anyone who has lived a longer period in another continent as for example Asia or Africa, can recognize the similarities of Europeans better than their differences.

The European identity is still underdeveloped. But it's exactly this identity, which can guarantee a future for the European Union.

This would require the improvement of living conditions for people who use Europe as a contiguous habitat, that exceed the national boundaries and that can recognize the larger context as a benefit.

 

 

People who use the European freedom of movement for real and spend their CVs in different countries, need, for example, a European mobile telephone contract, a European health insurance, a European pension, a European bank and account number, a European car license plates, and a European Chamber of Commerce etc .. Some of these things are already being planned and are in any case easier to realize than a European citizenship, or a European tax system, not to mention a European Republic. The barriers that exist mainly due to the different languages, are evident and the complexity of the European project is tremendous.

Once you say Europe, the background always reverberates with these complex relationships and manifold problems - but this sound also contains the whole history and the promise of a success.

The installation 'EUROPE' as a statement is so simple, like a neon sign, such as advertising for a brand that needs no justification, that everyone wants to have.


The opening of the installation took place on 26th of November at 6.00 P.M, Alexandrinenstr.118-121. Curator and writer Lukas Feireiss gave the opening speech.

The project originates from the initiative of morePlatz and is realized in the fall of 2016. To achieve this, we organized the financing of the installation by ourselves.
By a sponsorship it is possible to actively participate in the realization of the installation.
The thirty-three neon lights represent 33 sponsors, who support the idea.
The names of the project participants are engraved on the information board at the entrance of the gallery and were presented during the opening ceremony.

 

The installation at the ST. AGNES Church is temporary.
After some month, it can be dismantled and rebuilt at another location, for example at the "Komische Oper", Behrenstrasse. The opening is planned for the official Europe day on 9th of May.
Other stations on relevant buildings in Berlin and elsewhere are possible.

supported by:


Marc Feustel, Nicola Borgmann, Architekturgalerie München,
Peter Scheller, Palais Mai, Kerria Wittenberg, Martin Schnitzer, Rabes + Möntmann, Ernst Baumann, Matthias Werner, Matthias Castorph / Goetz Castorph, Judith Schele Weise, Ruben Dario Kleimeer, Rene Rissland, Allard van der Hoek + Marit Vos, MVRDV, KCAP Architects&Planners, Wilhelm Koch www.europa-tempel.de, Antony Gross / Gapp Architekten, Frank Thiele / Factor Product, Angelika Maria Fink / Pathos Theater, Andrea Kyre & Max von Sydow, Sebastian Hennig + Daniel Zakharov, Urs Primas, Jens Studer, Franziska Schneider / SSP, Brigitte Russ-Scherer, Martine Vledder, Gabriel Lester / Polylester, John Bosch / OZarchitect, Hanna Wolff, Klaus Neumann / Realgrün, Chris Hohenester & Alessandro Cioffi, Regine Geibel / muenchenarchitektur.com, Georg Götze / Götze Hadlich Architekten, Anne Steinberger / BDA Bayern, Sauerbruch Hutton / Matthias Sauerbruch, Louisa Hutton, MEK Rechtsanwälte, Sally Below / SBCA


Fotos © Ruben Dario Kleimeer

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