Thoughts on the exhibition WALLONWALL
Kai Wiedenhöfer is not only concerned with walls. He also wants to show that walls cannot solve political conflicts. Instead, they reflect the failure of politics. Walls obviously define friend and foe, inside and outside. Walls are oppressive exclusions and again and again also dictatorial confinements. In other words, walls are inhuman no matter what kind of architectural design or ideological justification is used for them.
After the fall of the Berlin wall back in November 1989, the southern front of the so-called Hinterlandmauer in the Berlin district Friedrichshain was decorated by many artists. Thus the “East-Side-Gallery” came into being and is understood as the artistic expression of this democratic change.
Today a second gallery is established on the wall’s rear side. With this exhibition, it reminds us that there are still walls all over the world which prevent democracy and reconciliation. Furthermore, it makes clear that walls are not determined by the laws of nature giving us no alternatives, but that they are always made by human beings and, therefore, can also be torn down by people.
You only need the will.
I thank Kai Wiedenhöfer for making possible a new dialogue about the wider implications of walls with this photographic exhibition.
District mayor Friedrichshain-Kreuzberg
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