Berlin Doesn't Love You
Exhibition Opening Monday May 13, 6pm
ANU School of Art and Design
Kate Matthews’ Berlin Doesn’t Love You speaks to a city in the grips of an image crisis. Berliners cling to the past as their city accelerates into the future. The city’s new status as the ‘start-up capital’ threatens the affordability, grunge and underground culture beloved by Berliners, immigrants and everyone alike for decades. Nineties nostalgia has erupted in the wake of gentrification. But is this a good thing? What aspects of Berlin's past really should be 'preserved'?
Berlin is fluent in the language of street art. For decades, conversations have taken place on the city’s walls (and Wall). There is a democratic spirit to this anarchic expression. By enlivening public space with debate, street artists embed their critiques in the fabric of the city itself.
Living in Kreuzberg, Kate studied Berlin’s contradictions through her camera. Using photomontage, she combined photos of the city to ask pertinent questions about its identity. Pasting her collages throughout her neighbourhood, Kate added her voice to the cacophony of street artists, engaging the city she loves in a language it understands.
Curated by Emily Bull, this exhibition invites us to reconsider the streets as forums of debate, where, through the power of images and words, paper and paint, we engage in conversation about the things that matter to us most.