The video clips introduce the avatar from Rachel Rossin’s THE MAW OF, a project that highlights the brain-computer interface and images subjectivity as a fusion of anatomy, technology, and digital reality. Both short scenes come from one layer of Rossin’s multifaceted, augmented reality installation KW on location: Rachel Rossin THE MAW OF at the Tieranatomisches Theater (15–18 Sept 22), where visitors will seek out this character and experience its hybrid corporeality. With a glowing interior, and a physical extension that appears like a sort of machine hardware, the avatar’s movements and materiality reflect how it becomes intertwined with both organic and technical components. THE MAW OF project includes a web component co-commissioned by KW Institute for Contemporary Art and the Whitney Museum of American Art.


— Katherine Adams, CCS Bard Curatorial Fellow

Handling Images and Relational Meaning
By Irmgard Emmelhainz

25 April 22

The 21st issue of F.R.DAVID, “Take, Eat” is edited by Will Holder, with Andrea di Serego Alighieri. Andrea’s image-heavy talk runs all the way through, on the right-hand pages: the opposite pages contain responses from Will. The issue almost stifles the triangulated space of image, context and commentary; and speaks to the moment between words, things, people, images, perception, past, present and future, between Andrea’s pages and Will’s, as where meaning might breathe.

For KW’s launch-broadcast, Will and Andrea have emulated the editorial of “Take, Eat” playing Andrea’s voice in the right channel, responded to by Will’s addition of RADIANT, by Black Spirituals, in the left channel. (You might want to adjust your settings).


More Information

Reports about


Black Swan: The Communes

23 February 2022

In August 2021, KW Institute for Contemporary Art invited Black Swan to run a 36-hour hackathon, as part of the public program of Disproof Does Not Equal Disbelief by Michael Stevenson. In the exhibition, Stevenson painstakingly addressed the juncture of economy, technology, education, religion, architecture and media, and the entanglement of these institutions, by reflecting on significant micro-narratives. A live-TV marathon charity fundraising event a.k.a. a telethon appeared as a key reference to stress the questionable relationship between the individual and larger overarching bodies, as well as the kayfabe (or: staged) logic of our lived reality. If something is constructed, it means it can be deconstructed, reconsidered, remodeled and redistributed too.


To put these thoughts into further practice, the Berlin-based collective Black Swan tested the emotional sustainability of different economic models and organizational forms, and directly redistribute institutional infrastructural resources to cultural practitioners. The role-playing activity of Black Swans: The Communes invited 40 participants to join one of four Communes each based around different modes of exchange, decision-making process, and organizational structure: the Clan, the Guild, the Cult and the Venture. Participants were recruited through a public open-call and assigned to one of the communes. You can read here an account of Stanton Taylor, one of the Hackathon participants, as well as here an introspective essay by Black Swan.


– Léon Kruijswijk, Assistant Curator at KW, Curator of Black Swan: The Communes

A Year with… BLESS N°72 BLESSlet – Interview Deutschlandfunk Kultur

26 January 2022


The situation designers Desiree Heiss and Ines Kaag talk more about their work in this interview. Listen to the entire interview “25 Jahre BLESS – Alltagsdesign aus Berlin” here or via this link.

In 2022, BLESS will celebrate her 25th anniversary, which KW will take as an opportunity to put the focus on Desiree Heiss and Ines Kaag’s visionary products and endeavors. A Year with BLESS will renegotiate many of the key issues that lie at the heart of her collaboration, creating an innovative format that seeks to connect life, work, leisure, and exercise. The duo will rethink existing processes and workflows and test them out artistically in different public areas. The one-year collaboration will unfold across three key projects: BLESS N° 72BLESSlet at KW; the Adretta-Reuter-intervention in the Ernst-Reuter-Siedlung, where the duo has her Berlin-based studio, and the release of the third book of her own publication series, BLESS III.

As part of the participatory installation BLESSlet, BLESS will take over KW’s Residency Apartment #11 and reimagine the way it is used, both as a place for living and as an experimental workplace. BLESSlet will form a habitat equipped with objects, furniture, and everyday objects that BLESS has designed, which will showcase the broad spectrum of the duo’s practice and offer unexpected opportunities for everyday activities, for leisure, and for tending to bread-and-butter office tasks. The apartment is meant to be actively used by staff as well as by visitors and visiting artists.

– Anna Gritz, curator A Year with BLESS

Renée Green: Inevitable Distances

Artist Talk with Renée Green and Karim Aïnouz

20 January 2022

As filmmakers and friends, Karim Aïnouz and Renée Green have moved through overlapping social spaces and places together. For this public dialogue, the pair meet to reflect on shared times and individual works, and present excerpts of their moving image work—including Aïnouz film Seams, which used Green’s installation Sites of Genealogy (currently restaged at KW) as a film set; and Green’s film Come Closer featuring Aïnouz—as context of how their ongoing interests continue to inform their work in intimate and open ways.


– Mason Leaver-Yap, KW Associate Curator

KW Digital: Open Secret
16 July – 31 December 21

15 January 2022

Open Secret was a six-month long online program exploring the role of the hidden in our apparently “open” society. Information technologies are supposed to increase our access to knowledge, making the world more legible, while undermining ignorance and superstition. But sometimes the feeling prevails that we have entered a new dark age of black boxes, projections, and paranoia. Techno-culture is obsessed with the unseen, the inaccessible, the known-unknown. Open Secret pursued things that are obscured–through artistic commissions, a suite of essays by leading thinkers, and an intensive public program dedicated to critical reappraisal of the digital infrastructures that organize civic life. Throughout the duration of the exhibition new contributions were released on a monthly basis on the Open Secret website which brought together art, technology, politics, and new patterns of exchange.


– Nadim Samman, curator digital sphere, in collaboration with Katja Zeidler, head of education & mediation

Krist Gruijthuijsen about Peter Friedl: Four or Five Roses

9 December 21

In light of Peter Friedl’s upcoming survey at KW Institute for Contemporary Art, I would like to share a typical but rather overlooked publication by the artist titled Four or Five Roses, which was published by Sternberg Press and Frankfurter Kunstverein back in 2004. As with many works of Friedl, the perspective of a child plays a central role as a way to reflect on how the world is constructed and manipulated. One of Friedl’s famous works is ‘Playgrounds’, which began in 1995 and documents playgrounds around the globe. Although the date and site are indicated in the images, a constant similarity is apparent through the distant perspective favoring aesthetics over functionality.

For Four or Five Roses, however, Friedl turns the gaze towards the perspective of the children themselves. For this, the artist conducted numerous interviews and conversations with them in and around Johannesburg, Cape Town and its surrounding townships. These narratives are transformed into monologues that create a fictionalized construct, given that children don’t normally give speeches that are schooled in the rhetoric of self-representation and self-promotion celebrated by a neoliberal economy.

Read some of the monologues here.


– Krist Gruijthuijsen, director KW Institute for Contemporary Art and curator of the upcoming exhibition ‘Peter Friedl: Report 1964 – 2022′

KW Guards and Guides Listen to… Renée Green: Inevitable Distances

6 December 21

The KW Guards and Guides are not only guardians for exhibited artworks (responsible for their ongoing preservation, as well as negotiating their interactions with the public), they are also the most dedicated audience in terms of the time they spend with the works. In Renée Green’s Inevitable Distances—an exhibition that contains well in excess of 30 hours of audio and video material—completionist consumption is not the point. But for the guards, their six weeks of exposure inevitably shifts awareness, concentration and experience of the sonic aspects of Green’s works over time.
            For KW’s inaugural playlist, these attentive listeners have selected their most memorable and favourite tracks drawn from across the exhibition—including selections from Import/Export Funk Office (1992), Übertragen/Transfer (1997), Sites of Genealogy (1990), Secret (1993), and Mise-en-Scène (1991).
            As is indicated by the years in which these works were made, the sonic has been a crucial and continuous part of Green’s practice. “My interest in sound and its effects is a long-term one that grew out of ways developed in childhood of recording, listening, and producing sounds and music,” notes Green. “What reaches us when it isn’t possible to rationalize what occurs? What also revives us amid conditions which might seem unbearable? What can create a sense of relation and momentary interconnectedness? When I thought of these things sound and music seemed to be the most consistent way in which more complex feelings could be touched, even without words. From drones to raves.”


— Mason Leaver-Yap, KW Associate Curator

The Berlin Sessions: Conversation between Renée Green, Iman Issa and Mason Leaver-Yap about the exhibitions Renée Green: Inevitable Distances and Understudies: I, Myself Will Exhibit Nothing

15 November 21

Camera and Cut: Frank Sperling

Renée Green

Inevitable Distances

Code: Survey

10 November 21

Renée Green’s Code: Survey is a work that spans multiple forms and locations: a monumental public art commission by California’s Department of Transportation that continues to be mounted on the cafeteria walls of its headquarters building designed by Thom Mayne/Morphosis in downtown Los Angeles; a series of schematic drawings, photographic prints, and a sculptural prototype comprised of glass, film, and steel, currently mounted in KW’s main exhibition hall in Berlin; and the original website component that has been re-coded and uploaded onto KW’s website and will remain online for the period of exhibition.


In its manifold forms, Code: Survey examines historical and current perceptions of transportation via 168 maps, diagrams, and photographs. Just as the provenance of the images in this tessellated work varies, so too do the views that shaped the rapid growth of California with its utopian dreams, varied consequences and historical conditionings. Allowing remote access to the work’s contents beyond its physical Los Angeles site, Code: Survey provides a thorough, albeit subjective, repository for the images that constitute the physical work, enriched with additional text, audio and video.

Go to Code: Survey, hosted by

Read Gloria Sutton’s essay on Code: Survey [PDF via Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts]


— Mason Leaver-Yap, KW Associate Curator

20 September 21

The Podcast City follows a script which could also be a template for one of Phung-Tien Phan’s films, in which the artist explores contemporary lifestyles, the performativity of daily life and our different roles between labor and leisure time. As her own roles move fluidly between author of the script, artist, and actor, her practice is situated in a close network of relationships and the social and material conditions of her own creative labor, while addressing questions of creativity, social privileges, and neoliberal logics of consumption and self-marketing. More

Zeros and Ones: Exhibition Walk-through with Anna Gritz and Kathrin Bentele

26 August 21

Camera: Frank Sperling

Prologue to The Metabolic Museum

Manifesto for The Post-Ethnographic Museum

Walking Through

Artists and Anthropologists

A science-fantasy novel set in Manchester, UK in 2080, Orion J. Facey’s The Virosexuals portraits a subculture that shares a desire to escape the broad algorithmization of our lives, bodies, and minds. Experimenting with virosexuality—the sexual attraction to transmitting and receiving STI’s—, the group around the main character Amygdala negotiates their bodies and desires while being faced with a virus sweeping the scene and the dangers and vulnerabilities of going off-grid. More

Pogo Bar Podcast
Nicholas Grafia and Mikołaj Sobczak:
It’s 10PM. Do You know where your children are?

28 July 21

It’s 10pm. Do You know where your children are? narrates the struggles of teenagers dealing with their queerness within varying family dynamics and socio-political realities. The intertwined stories of the two protagonists touch upon memories, expectations and values shared between parents and their offspring with a diasporic background, unveiling the confluence of primary feelings of love, hate, desire and regret. More

13 July 21

Meet Hope and Derek Heehaw—two siblings from a country-music-obsessed family in the south of the USA—in this radio show as day trip journal. More

Pogo Bar Podcast
Alexander Iezzi:
Heehaw Angel Hunting—Lesson in Companionshit

12 July 21

Courtesy Sarah Rapson

Note from Sarah Rapson

Wir führten eines unserer üblichen Telefongespräche. Wir sprachen über das Leben, über den Umgang mit der durch die Pandemie uns aufgezwungenen Distanz. Ein Suizid hatte deine Familie erschüttert. Die Trauer überwältigte uns beide. Ich konnte dich nicht erreichen. Ich wollte die Grenze von Großbritannien nach Europa überqueren, doch schien der Tod kein angemessener Reisegrund zu sein. Mehr

We were having one of our usual phone calls. Talking about life, dealing with the distance the pandemic had enforced upon us. Then there was a suicide that hit your family. Grief overwhelmed us both. I could not reach you. I wanted to cross the border from the UK to the EU, but death is not essential travel. I wanted to smuggle my body across the border. I was not allowed. More

You’re not muted.

8 July 21

Diogo de Moraes, from the series Testes vocais, 2020–2021

Emancipatory art education practices should not only adapt to online scenarios, but also create questions and languages that respond to a radical shift in today’s social, political, and cultural landscapes. How do we – cultural workers, educators, artists, and researchers – actively bring these new tools, meanings and words into our daily practice?


The event series You’re not muted. Negotiating new meanings through art and education continues KW’s investigation into new settings in educational and socially engaged practices and opens a path to a collaboration with the DAAD Artists-in Berlin Program, to foster possibilities of broad international exchange in the realm of the educational field in the arts.

Cyberfeminist Index

8 July 21

Lee Lozano, A Boring Drawing, 1963 – 1969; Courtesy The Estate of Lee Lozano and Hauser & Wirth; Photo: Jon Etter

The group exhibition Zeros and Ones at KW Institute for Contemporary Art is inspired by the approach from the book Zeros + Ones: Digital Women and the New Technoculture (1997) by writer and theorist Sadie Plant. The book is a prominent contribution to the cyberfeminist literature. Plant’s publication is part of a scene, which established worldwide since the early 1990s and authors numerous texts, publications, and essays. Cyberfeminist Index list categorizes, and describes publications in an open-source Google Spreadsheet. Any user can edit and contribute to the list and includes publications on topics such as hacking, science fiction, surveillance, glitch, and much more.

Pogo Bar Podcast
Beth Collar:
Scatter Cushion

8 July 21

With a melancholic anticipation of absent bodies permeating her thoughts after a day-trip to the Etruscan site of the Necropolis Banditaccia, she counters the epic fabric of history and ideology-serving, gendered notions of the chronicler or bard with too-personal comment, fragmented memory, incidental noises, alcohol and urine. More

Open Secret

Vladan Joler, Vorschau der Videoarbeit The News Extractivism, 2021


Das sechsmonatige Online-Programm Open Secret (16. Juli – 31. Dezember 21) untersucht die Rolle des Verborgenen in unserer scheinbar ‚offenen‘ Gesellschaft. Monatlich werden neue Beiträge auf der Website veröffentlicht, die Kunst, Automatisierung, Politik und neue Formen des Austauschs zusammenbringt. Das Webdesign wurde von Sometimes Always entworfen und wird ab dem 16. Juli 2021 verfügbar sein.

Vladan Joler, Preview from the video work The News Extractivism, 2021


Open Secret (16 July – 31 December 21) is a six-month long online program that explores the image of the ‘technological hidden’ in our apparently ‘open’ society. With new contributions released on a monthly basis, the Open Secret website will bring together art, automation, politics, and new patterns of exchange. The website is designed by Sometimes Always and will be made available from 16 July 2021 onwards.

Web-site-specific Sculpture: Juliana Cerqueira Leite in conversation with Nadim Samman

The Last Museum präsentiert künstlerische Arbeiten, die sowohl reale als auch virtuelle Bereiche durchkreuzen. Die Künstlerin Juliana Cerqueira Leite (Brasilien/USA) spricht über die produktive Verwischung von physischem Original, digitalem Doppelgänger und dem Online-Platzierung von Skulpturen. Weitere Informationen

The Last Museum featured artworks straddling both real and virtual domains. In this talk, participating artist Juliana Cerqueira Leite (Brasil/USA) reflects upon productive blurring between physical original, digital doppelganger, and the stakes of sculpture online. More info

The Last Museum

16 June 21

The Last Museum will tour as a ‘pop-up exhibition’ on the website of Polyeco Contemporary Art Initiative (PCAI), Athens from September 14 to October 16, 2021.

Amelie von Wulffen
Pedigree, 1996/1999

Claymation, in collaboration with Michael Graessner

In Pedigree (1996–1999, co-produced with Michael Graessner) audio fragments from films by Michelangelo Antonioni and Andrei Tarkovsky provide the acoustic bed of politics and love in which a couple’s passionate encounter unfolds against a melodramatic technicolor sky.

A Letter for Leo,
Krist Gruijthuijsen

In dem Knetgummi-Animationsfilm Pedigree (1996–1999, koproduziert mit Michael Graessner) bereiten Audio-Fragmente aus Filmen von Michelangelo Antonioni und Andrei Tarkowski das akustische Bett aus Politik und Liebe, in dem sich vor einem dramatisch gefärbten Himmel die leidenschaftliche Begegnung eines Paares vollzieht.

A Letter for Leo,
Krist Gruijthuijsen

In dem Knetgummi-Animationsfilm Pedigree (1996–1999, koproduziert mit Michael Graessner) bereiten Audio-Fragmente aus Filmen von Michelangelo Antonioni und Andrei Tarkowski das akustische Bett aus Politik und Liebe, in dem sich vor einem dramatisch gefärbten Himmel die leidenschaftliche Begegnung eines Paares vollzieht.

Pogo Bar Podcast
Luzie Meyer: The Acquisition of Language & The Language of Acquisition

Image: Courtesy the artist

Artist-poet Luzie Meyer traces the property of language to both confine and liberate, and the verbal means of expression available to us in times of digital media and algorithms. More Info

Beatrice Gibson
What’s Love Got To Do With It?

Courtesy Beatrice Gibson, Design by HIT Studio

Artist Beatrice Gibson pairs six contemporary poets discussing the topic of love: CAConrad and LeAnne Howe, Alice Notley and Precious Okoyomon, and Ariana Reines and Sophie Robinson. This three-part podcast series makes sonic space in which these poets share, listen and respond to one another’s work, and features unique compositions by Crystabel Riley and Seymour Wright. More info

Pogo Bar Podcast
Simnikiwe Buhlungu:
Anecdotal Through-isms

Künstlerin Beatrice Gibson mit sechs zeitgenössischen Poet*innen CAConrad und LeAnne Howe, Alice Notley und Precious Okoyomon sowie Ariana Reines und Sophie Robinson über das Thema Liebe. Die dreiteilige Podcast-Serie schafft einen akustischen Raum, in dem die Künstler*innen ihre Werke miteinander teilen, einander zuhören und darauf reagieren und bietet zudem einzigartige Kompositionen von Crystabel Riley und Seymour Wright. Weitere Informationen

Pogo Bar Podcast
Nadja Abt:
Mutiny on the Bivalvia –
Interview with a Seafarer

Courtesy the artist

Mutiny on the Bivalvia is a radio play about power and relationships. In an interview, a seafarer and previously successful artist delineates her motives for wanting to become a member of the female crew on board of the „Bivalvia“ and her daily life as a seafarer. The interviewer has but one question on her mind: What has lead the all-women crew to shipwreck and mutiny? More info

Orpheus and the Technocave

Lecture + sonic reply with curator Nadim Samman and techno producer Inland (Ed Davenport). The myth of Orpheus tells the story of a musician and poet who charms his way into the underworld, to recover a love stolen away and imprisoned. At the birth of the modern world, this myth would become the basis of an initiatory cult exalting the status of the artist for their ability to cross thresholds between worlds and (re)capture knowledge. Today’s Orphic journeys foreground the functional texture of searching: The labor of finding one’s direction inside the thing—all the wrong turns, and right ones too—cutting fences; picking locks; crawling through gaps. Diving deeper into the megastructure in order to move beyond it. More info

Orpheus and the Technocave

Image: Courtesy the artists; Photo: Rasmus Bell

Thea Reifler and Philipp Bergmann invited Lou Drago, Isabel Lewis, Ann Mbuti and Omsk Social Club for exchanges of thoughts departing from science fiction quotes. They sat down to talk about how the genre has influenced their ways of thinking, relating, creating art and programming institutions. Within the conversations, they discuss how it changed their perceptions of truth and fiction, dreamtime and world-time, structures and processes as well as change and collaboration. More info