Honest to God I know nothing about art, so I won’t give you shit about that. But I do know a couple of things about Berlin, so I decided to do something relevant to my education and visit the often mentioned exhibition by Icelandic native Olafur Eliasson. His work at the Martin-Gropius-Bau called “Innen Stadt Außen” is his own interpretation of Berlin.
I won’t give away too much of it; one thing I can say is it was one of the best exhibitions I’ve ever been to, if not the best (that said, I really haven’t been to many, so take whatever you want from that). Every piece of artwork, whether it be an installation or an interactive game with the visitor, was carefully thought-through and indeed, if not on first sight, had something to with Berlin (or life in Berlin). What got me the most was not, in fact, the artful perspective on urban life. Yes, there was some stunning architecture and fantastic visuals, but what really struck a chord was how there was no art unless someone was there. A visitor. A person. Anyone. The people who went to the exhibition did not just witness the output of an artist, they were needed for its completion.
Maybe this is too far fetched, but for me, this is exactly what makes Berlin: a city stunning in its own, but worth nothing without the people who live here and who keep it alive. They complement what is already there. The buildings would be neglectable without the graffiti, the sidewalks would be clean without the life on it, the parks would be empty without the karaoke.
Today is the last day of Eliassons exhibition. If you can rack up the time: go and visit. It’s definitely worth the money. Unfortunately, I couldn’t take many pictures (and those I took where from the hip) because it’s not allowed, but there would be nothing much to display anyway– it’s an incredible experience.