Abteilung für Alles Andere, Ackerstraße 18 / Berlin-Mitte

Difference Screen presented at Abteilung für Alles Andere on Wednesday 1 July 2015. An artists’ run space for 25 years Ackerstraße 18 has a particular niche in the Berlin art scene; the Abteilung is run by Stefan Riebel and his sister Ulrike.

‘On the occasion of the 25th birthday of the “Künstlerhaus am Acker!” and the 5th birthday of the “Institut für Alles Mögliche”, we take a look back at the history of the building at number 18 Ackerstraße, where the Institut has been based since 2011.’

Untitled-1 a

Although he was unable to attend we began the evening with Stefan’s work untitled #81

The programme featured a selection of works mostly unseen at Displaced. To our surprise four of the audience were artists visiting Berlin from Norwich. They included Théo and Hannah who collaborate as Dyad Creative http://www.dyad-creative.com/

A further surprise was talking with Gregor, an artist who had grown up in Luckenwalde who wondered what on earth could have taken us to the former East German city he had left as a teenager. I spoke to him about Displaced and reminded him of the Mendelsohnhalle. By chance we had unwittingly seen Gregor’s graffiti work at Teufelsberg, The Devil’s Mountain the day before.

Teufelsberg, a huge artificial hill in the Grunewald Forest built from the rubble of the destroyed city after WW2 has an extraordinary history. Located in the former British sector of Berlin, the 380ft hill offered the perfect place for the listening station built and operated by the US Army Security Agency (ASA) and UK Government Communications Headquarters throughout the cold war. It was abandoned after the collapse of the Soviet Union.
Buried beneath the hill is an unfinished military-technical college (Wehrtechnische Fakultät) designed by Albert Speer.

The former spy station is now an enigmatic ruin covered in graffiti. Ex US intelligence officer Chris McLarren leads history tours http://berliner-teufelsberg.com/web/en/fuhrungen-und-preise/

Bruce Allan

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