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A People’s Berlin: Discussion at the Werkstadt

A small group of participants joined Shriya and Cordula at the Werkstadt on Emser Strasse to review the process and point of the mailbox. To put it into context as participatory arts research for DIY place-making. The questions they asked us were mostly practical ones, which made us analyze the process. As it turns out, mailboxes are a great complaint format, but are not the best to create a discussion. It seems that no one who left mail actually came to talk about what they wrote, even though we removed the mailbox and replaced it with a sign about the event. From the point of view of analyzing behavior, it shows that the act of writing and offering a solution or pointing out a problem is generally the extent to which people want to get involved in transforming their environment. To be motivated to attend a discussion was an entirely different type of urban ‘activist’ personality-either students, researchers or those simply interested in why this art project was being conducted. Nice conversations, nonetheless, and we got to share Partizaning projects and artefacts from Moscow in connection with Berlin.

A People’s Berlin: Highlights from Mailbox 1 in Neukolln


Some of the letters received at the Emster Strasse mailbox. 10 letters received were in German and Turkish. People raised concerns about gentrification of the neighborhood; the rising price of rent; offered suggestions to improve the trash system; and left comments about being satisfied that there is no dog shit.


A People’s Berlin: Neukolln Mailbox Results at the Werkstadt

We  organized a meeting on the same street where installed the mailbox, inviting residents and interested participants to attend, review the notes and share their thoughts.


A People’s Berlin: Psychogeographic Mapping in Moabit v. 1

Moabit is a fascinating ‘island’, and inner-city of Berlin. It is the site of a new ‘partizaning’ research in the city. Most interesting is its fairly large (almost 50%) migrant population; and, the fact that industrial spaces in the district have been changing slowly over time. There is a strong connection between memory, change and transformation in this district. There are many overlooked voices and spaces in the district, and what was most striking is how segregated life seemed to be. What and were you socialized divided up by age, language, occupation and culture. Although questions about spatial changes are more visible in the ‘gentrifying’ areas of Neukolln or Kruezberg, Moabit has been filled with an anticipation that ‘things ARE going to change.’ In any case, the discussion about gentrification and gentrifying has happened enough in Belin. This project sought to explore the concept of home and the experience of migrants and refugees. Through participatory public space mapping and mailbox surveying, the goal was to create a people’s ethnography of the neighborhood. One that accounted for their stories, their perceptions of change and how they adapt the built environments to meet their needs. As a first step, in mid-December, a prototype map of the area was made on duct tape. People visiting or living in Moabit were Invited to share their knowledge and experience based on different emotions related to different spaces. The map is less about being an output, and more of a process. It continues to evolve as people leave their  mark on it. 



Блог лаборатории Партизанинга