Martin Ebner and Ariane Müller, Arms Will Get Longer, 2020


The lack of any predictable future that defines this situation as being as far from normal as possible is embedded in the feeling that there has to be some difference to how the world has been before we went home.

The sky is extra blue these days.
I take long walks.

Longing. The vast studio of an artist friend, located two meters underneath the thin asphalt of empty Alexanderplatz, invisible for the outside. It is night, but lit by sunlight. She is rehearsing with an object, present and absent at the same time, smiling to her inside. An old indian conceptual artist sits at the table and writes. I accidentally cause remote music by scratching frozen snow on the wall with a long stick.

But this is a dream, and I don’t remember mine anymore.

·Worng· was written on a shirt which I once saw for a second, or was it.

But today brought a big change. The first person wanted to come by and see us. In social distancing mode he said, to drink a glass of wine. This is information. Check, and re-check. Let’s get updown.



as part of:

The Covid-19 diaries series
Online exhibitions in three parts

PART II: New Normal:
Jeanette Bisshops, Alison Chen, Hao Chen, Martin Ebner & Ariane Müller, Sooj Heo, Orange Li, Silvia Li, Yiwei Lu, Xingrong Qiao, kate-hers RHEE, José Soto, Marlies Pöschl, Koji Ueda, and Yichen Zhou.

Part I: Isolation:
Chris Bennie, Alison Chen, Woo Ram Jung, Qinyuan Lei, Silvia Li, Grace Noh, Benny Or, kate-hers RHEE, Xiaoyao Xu, and Yichen Zhou

The series of online exhibitions are organized and curated by Grace Noh and Yichen Zhou, Co-Founders of MiA Collective Art.







Starship 19


We would like to invite you on the occasion of the new issue of Starship magazine for an afternoon presentation in Berlin at TV Bar.
Aus Anlass des Erscheinens einer neuen Ausgabe des Magazins Starship freuen wir uns zur Präsentation in Berlin in die TV Bar einzuladen

Gerry Bibby, Mihaela Chiriac, Nikola Dietrich, Martin Ebner, Ariane Müller, Henrik Olesen

Sunday, 23 February, from 4pm
Sonntag, 23. Februar, ab 16:00


Cover: Nora Schultz, Back cover: Mark van Yetter
Magazine Design: Starship and Dan Solbach


Starship #19, Apokolypse of the praktikal moment
Spring 2020, 176 pages, color, English/German
8 € / abroad 10 € ($12)


presents artists contributions by John Boskovich, Elijah Burger, Simon Denny, Cornelia Herfurtner, Yuki Kimura, Vera Palme, Nora Schultz, Jack Smith;
and by Rosa Aiello, Carter Frasier, María Galindo, Samuel Jeffery & Daniel Herleth, Elisa R. Linn, Paul B. Preciado, and Haytham El-Wardany

introducing new columnists: Mihaela Chiriac, Michèle Graf & Selina Grüter, Julia Jung, The Parliament of Bodies, and Ulla Rossek

and our columnists: Tenzing Barshee, Gerry Bibby, Mercedes Bunz, David Bussel, Eric D. Clark, Jay Chung, Hans-Christian Dany with Valérie Knoll, Francesca Drechsler, Stefanie Fezer & Vera Tollmann, Julian Göthe, Karl Holmqvist, Stephan Janitzky, Jakob Kolding, Lars Bang Larsen, Ariane Müller with Huang Rui, Robert M. Ochshorn, Mark von Schlegell, Max Schmidtlein, Amelie von Wulffen, and Florian Zeyfang

and artworks by Melvin Edwards, Elizabeth Ravn, Nong Shoahua, and Mark van Yetter



Dear friends,
However much previous iterations may have joyfully detoured, escaping the suggestion of an introduced preoccupation, slipping into other orbits, we did not enter into this issue with a central theme. #19’s prefered entry into this nominally new decade is with a de-centred face—including a slight shift/glitch in our format that’s been around since Henrik and Nikola set re-start on the magazine. Borrowed from the new or old, or projecting an altogether non-face, this might be a mask if we’re to take Jack Smith’s lead. If it has organs that better sense the world around it differently, these might be submerged, sensing other spaces, as Nora Schultz’s cover and contribution reminds us. Swimming throughout these pages, fragments of surfacing whales make contact with a conversation between women who talk about women; confront the social deviations of a (dis)behaving inside outsider; locate the violence of a cage designed for a worker’s optimized productivity from a distance… & even senses a lamenting allegory about dogs in a desert without language. Before returning to what lies beneath the surface, leaving it for the activities of painters and poets.

—Gerry Bibby, Mihaela Chiriac, Nikola Dietrich, Martin Ebner, Ariane Müller, Henrik Olesen
(from the editorial)

Starship Nº 19 is published by Starship e.V.
Editors (ViSdP):
Gerry Bibby, Mihaela Chiriac, Nikola Dietrich, Martin Ebner, Ariane Müller, Henrik Olesen


Please join us at
Potsdamer Straße 151
10783 Berlin-Schöneberg

Sunday, 23 February, from 4pm

Bar open every
from 7pm until late




RPI – West Germany

Mask Off 1
West Germany, Berlin

Live audio video performances

Recycling Plastic Inevitable (RPI)
Theresa Patzschke, Eleni Poulou, Martin Ebner, Sebastian Luetgert
Wild Style Lion (Khan of Finland and Philipp Virus)
Dabbs Anderson
Gina D’Orio
Caesar Von Schnitzler


all photos ©️ Tanja Krokos/



Ariane Müller & Martin Ebner, Untitled (It)
Video installation, mixed media, 2019

Red Gate Residency, December Open Studio
Saturday, December 28th, 2019
Chris Bennie, Guo Rui, Ariane Müller & Martin Ebner, Meng Deyu, Zhou Yichen

Red Gate Gallery
798 Art District,
No. 2 Jiuxianqiao Road,
Chaoyang District, Beijing, China


Opposition to the Commodity
ICA – Institute of Contemporary Arts
Sat, 07 Dec 2019, 2:00 p.m.
The Mall, London SW1Y 5AH

Artist Self-Publishers’ Fair: The 5th


Seven self-publishing artists read and perform their work as a prelude to the 2019 edition of the Artist Self-Publishers’ Fair.

Through a series of presentations, artists, writers and publishers address radical notions of accessibility and opposition to the commodity. Performers include Ruth Angel Edwards, Adam Gallagher, Emily Pope, Recycling Plastic Inevitable, Oliver Rees, James Whittingham and Angharad Williams.

Recycling Plastic Inevitable (RPI)
Theresa Patzschke, Eleni Poulou, Martin Ebner, Sebastian Luetgert

Ruth Angel Edwards currently lives and works in London. Her work has been exhibited in the UK and internationally at Arcadia Missa, London; Auto Italia South East, London; Tate Modern; FACT, Royal Standard, Liverpool; Human Resources, Los Angeles; and MEYOHAS Gallery, New York.

Adam Gallagher is an artist and writer based in London who works mainly through performance –challenging its reliance upon temporality and working against the performative-artist-ego. He self-publishes a series of pamphlets called E.A.R.F.

Emily Pope is an artist based in London. She is currently making a sitcom called The Sitcom Show. She is interested in labour, characterisations of ‘the worker’, monologues, ‘feminist’ video art, series making, mainstream and experimental television, social realism and American folk singers (mainly Nanci Griffith), among other things.

Recycling Plastic Inevitable (R.P.I.) is a minimally expanded video and music project by Theresa Patzschke, Sebastian Luetgert and Martin Ebner, artists and/or writers living in Berlin. For their performance as part of ASP5, they will be joined by musician Eleni Poulou (Honey-Suckle Company) to present an audiovisual sequence based on words and sentences from the Berlin-based art magazine STARSHIP.

Oliver Rees is a London-based artist. Exhibitions as a solo artist and as part of the group Model Court include Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin; Stroom Den Haag, The Hague; Gasworks, London; Limoncello, London; Theaterhaus Jena; The Hole, London; Bonheur Theatre, Rotterdam; and Chisenhale Gallery, London.

James Whittingham lives and works in London. His work has been shown at 3236rls London, Liszt gallery Berlin and Lima Zulu project space London. He has written a novella titled Drones & Dresses.

Angharad Williams is an artist and writer who lives and works between Wales and Berlin. Recent group and solo projects have taken place at Haus Zur Liebe, Schaffhausen; Barbara Weiss, Berlin; Croy Nielsen, Vienna; No Bounds Festival, Sheffield; Peak, London and Radiophrenia, CCA, Glasgow.


Book tickets
02:00 pm
Sat, 07 Dec 2019
Cinema 1

£7 Full, £5 Concs/Green Members, £3 Blue Members
Red Membership includes free access to all programmes for £16.66 / month.

Ice Cigarettes

Ice Cigarettes

November 30, 2019
Grüner Salon, Volksbühne Berlin

Klaus Weber
Egill Saebjörnsson
Kolbeinn Hugi Höskuldsson
Marja Marlene Lechner

Visuals: Martin Ebner

Eric D. Clark

on the occasion of the opening of
Klaus Weber: NONUMENTS
Opening: 30.11.19, 19:00
Duration of the exhibition: 1.12.19 – 16.02.20
Opening hours: 24/7
LVX. Pavilion of the Volksbühne at Rosa-Luxemburg-Platz




On the occasion of the closing of Ariane Müller AN, please join us for:

10 Minuten live Verpuffung:
Recycling Plastic Inevitable (R.P.I.)
mit Theresa Patzschke, Sebastian Lütgert, Martin Ebner

Sunday, October 20th 2019; 5 – 8 pm
10 Minuten live Verpuffung: 7 pm, sharp


Schiefe Zaehne
Schliemannstr. 37
10437 Berlin




a-clip @ arsenal


October 9, 07:00 pm
Arsenal Cinema 2
Potsdamer Straße 2
10785 Berlin

Public screening
Free admission


A-Clip was a project (1997–2003) that proceeded from the basic idea of making use of the attention of cinema audiences to place political and subjective artistic statements. Short films were made to this end which took their bearings from the advertising aesthetic, picking up on it, mocking it, or breaking with it, and which grappled with the theme of “internal disquiet” that grips people and leads to a lack of solidarity. The individual A-clips, each of them around 50 seconds long, were edited into the blocks of cinema adverts. The A-clip producers were filmmakers or artists looking for new ways of creating a political public. For the use of A-clips in cinemas, 35mm prints were created, which remained in the Arsenal archive and are now stepping out into the light once again. At a public screening, we don’t just want to inspect the state of the material, but also see what sort of effect the clips have today. (stss) (9.10., screening attended by several producers).

A-Clip war ein Projekt (1997–2003), das von der Grundidee ausging, die Aufmerksamkeit des Kinopublikums für die Platzierung politischer und subjektiv-künstlerischer Aussagen zu nutzen. Dafür wurden Kurzfilme produziert, die sich an der Werbefilmästhetik orientierten, sie aufgriffen, persiflierten oder brachen, und die sich mit dem Thema der „inneren Verunsicherung“ auseinandersetzten, die Menschen erfasst und zur Entsolidarisierung führt. Die einzelnen A-Clips, jeweils ca. 50 Sekunden lang, wurden in die Werbeblöcke der Kinos hineingeschnitten. Die A-Clip-Produzent*innen sind Filmemacher*innen oder Künstler*innen, die neue Wege suchten, um eine politische Öffentlichkeit herzustellen.
Für den Einsatz der A-Clips in den Kinos wurden 35-mm-Kopien hergestellt, die im Archiv des Arsenal verblieben und nun wieder hervorgeholt werden. In einer öffentlichen Sichtung wollen wir nicht nur den Zustand des Materials begutachten, sondern auch überprüfen, welche Wirkung die Clips heute entfalten. (stss) (9.10., in Anwesenheit einiger Produzent*innen)

A-clip in the Arsenal – Institute for Film and Video Art Archive

Friends With Books 2019

Friends with Books
Art Book Fair Berlin
Hamburger Bahnhof –
Museum für Gegenwart – Berlin
20–22 September 2019

Are You…Friends with Books? Public Programmes 2019

Saturday, 21 September
13:00 h
Art Historian Fiona Geuss and artist Martin Ebner of Starship discuss conversational formats in art from 1969 to the 1990s and how publications not only accompany exhibitions, but can also be an integral part of artistic practices due to their ephemeral format. Presented by Friends with Books.

Athens Art Book Fair 2019



Starship @
Athens Art Book Fair 2019
kindly hosted by Radio Athènes

Athens Art Book Fair is an artist-run initiative aiming to bring together and showcase artist publications produced in Greece as well as to create a link with publishing-based artistic practices (print, online and else) internationally.
Athens Art Book Fair was founded in 2019 by Margarita Athanasiou and Michalis Pichler.


Recycling Plastic Inevitable (RPI)



Recycling Plastic Inevitable (RPI)

Musik-ähnliche Musik, Bild-ähnliche BIlder, intensives Gewühl in filigranem Dekor, kaum wahrnehmbare oder sehr schnelle Bewegungen, zugeneigtes Pendeln und gelegentliche Improvisationen in brüchig gleitenden Bild-Ton-Spuren mit Theresa Patzschke, Sebastian Luetgert und Martin Ebner

Music-like music, image-like images, intense bustle in filigree decor, barely perceptible or very fast movements, affectionate swings and occasional improvisations in crumbly gliding audiovisual tracks by Theresa Patzschke, Sebastian Luetgert and Martin Ebner

Sunday, 1.9.2019, 4pm
TROPEZ im Sommerbad Humboldthain
Wiesenstraße 1, 13357 Berlin



Greenscreen works supported by
Medienwerkstatt im Kulturwerk des bbk Berlin


10 Years of Provence

10 Years of Provence
at Motto / The Downer
Skalitzer Strasse 68, Berlin

Opening Friday 23 August, 6-10pm

Gerry Bibby, Megan Francis Sullivan, Martin Ebner, Edgars Gluhovs, Daniel Herleth and Bärbel Trautwein of Oracle, Karl Holmqvist, Lisa Holzer, Ilya Lipkin, Inka Meißner, Ariane Müller, Kaspar Müller, Henrik Olesen, Philip Pilekjær, Marina Pinsky, Josephine Pryde, Starship Magazine and Seyoung Yoon

Browse a selection of Provence publications and editions





Browse further titles in our catalogue

Any questions write to:

Motto Berlin
Skalitzer Str. 68, 10997 Berlin
Mon.-Sat. 12-20h
+49 (0)30 48816407



The Time is Now


Please join us for a summerly afternoon screening in Berlin:

The Time is Now
Videos by Heidrun Holzfeind


Sunday, 18.8.2019, 4pm
TROPEZ im Sommerbad Humboldthain
Wiesenstraße 1, 13357 Berlin



Both films feature the Japanese shamanic improvisation duo IRO (Toshio and Shizuko Orimo). The couple has worked together since 1981. IRO’s music combines influences from punk, 1970s Free Jazz, ethnic music, ancient Shinto rituals, and indigenous ceremonies. For Heidrun Holzfeind’s videos the duo performed in various locations of the Inter-University Seminar House in the Tokyo suburb of Hachioji designed by Japanese architect and thinker Takamasa Yosizaka. Yosizaka’s ideas about the relationship between humans, nature and architecture, individuality and community, sustainability and peace, as well as his critique of Western civilization in many respects concur with the couple’s animist and pantheist weltanschauung. Their musical experimentation goes hand in hand with their activist involvement in the peace and anti-nuclear movement and a free-spirited way of life that vehemently rejects commercialism in all its forms.

Heidrun Holzfeind is an artist and filmmaker interested in how architecture interacts with people’s everyday life. She questions immanent architectural and social utopias, exploring the interrelations between history and identity, individual histories and political narratives of the present.



TROPEZ is a space for art inside the public pool Sommerbad Humboldthain initiated by Nele Heinevetter.

With: Gili Avissar, Kira Bunse, Natalie Czech, Constant Dullaart, Julie Favreau, Bertrand Flanet, Richard Frater, Das Helmi & BFF’s, Luzie Meyer, Hayal Pozanti, Dylan Spencer-Davidson, Michael Sports, Elisabeth Wood & TAWG, Young Boy Dancing Group as well as BDPs reading series Literature at TROPEZ, Creamcake’s discussion and concert-format Europool, Starship’s Screenings At The Pool, and performances by Christian Naujoks, Peter Cant and Krzysztof Honowski invited by Clara Meister and Clare Molloy, and the children’s programme 1,2,3 SOLEIL.








Written in the Stars

Mihaela Chiriac



When the subway jerks it’s the fixed stars that throw you down1. But indeed, the North Star is no fixed star. In other words, it is, though merely in relation to us and our microscopic existence. Which means that while this is true, it also is not, and so it is, as many things in this world seem to be, relative. How is one supposed to navigate, given these imprecise, deceiving coordinates, and whereto? One shall simply rely on one’s own body as a system of reference. Expanding on the divide between the physiological and the geometrical space, some ideas from the year 1906 would suggest so:

The sensible space of our immediate perception, which we find ready at hand on awakening to full consciousness, is considerably different from geometrical space.

The space of the Euclidian geometry is everywhere and in all directions constituted alike; it is unbounded and it is infinite in extent. On the other hand, the space of sight, or “visual space”, (…), is found to be neither constituted everywhere and in all directions alike, nor infinite in extent, nor unbounded.

The visual space in its origin is in nowise metrical.

The skin, which is a closed surface of complicated geometrical form, is an agency of spatial perception.

The fact that our sense of space is not developed at points where it can have no biological function, should not be a cause of special astonishment to us. What purpose could it serve to be informed concerning the location of internal organs over the functions of which we have no control? Thus, our sense of space does not extend to any great distance into the interior of the nostrils.

[Yet, if I may remind, is not the spleen an indication of Saturn?]

The biological needs would not be satisfied with the pure relations of geometric space. “Rightness,” “leftness,” “aboveness,” “belowness,” “nearness,” and “farness,” must be distinguished by a sensational quality.

The perfect biological adaptation of large groups of connected elementary organs among one another is thus very distinctly expressed in the perception of space.

Every sensation is in part spatial in character (…).

Although every single feeling due to a sensory organ (feeling of space) is registered according to its specific character between those next related to it, a plurality of excited organs is nevertheless very advantageous for distinctness of localization, for the reason that the contrasts between the feelings of locality are enlivened in this way. Visual space, therefore, which ordinarily is well filled with objects, thus affords the best means of localization. Localization becomes at once uncertain and fluctuant for a single bright spot on a dark background.

Horror vacui, the terror of the empty space. The unthinkable Emptiness.



Where was I? The change. In what did it consist? It is hard to say. Something slipped. There I was, warm and bright, smoking my tobacco-pipe, watching the warm bright wall, when suddenly somewhere some little thing slipped, some little tiny thing. Gliss-iss-iss-STOP! I trust I make myself clear. There is a great alp of sand, one hundred metres high, between the pines and the ocean, and there in the warm moonless night, when no one is looking, no one listening, in tiny packets of two or three millions the grains slip, all together, a little slip of one or two lines maybe, and then stop, all together, not one missing, and that is all, that is all for that night, and perhaps for ever that is all, for in the morning with the sun a little wind from the sea may come, and blow them one from another far apart, or a pedestrian scatter them with his foot, though that is less likely. It was a slip like that I felt, that Tuesday afternoon, millions of little things moving all together out of their old place, into a new one nearby, and furtively, as though it were forbidden. And I have little doubt that I was the only person living to discover them. To conclude from this that the incident was internal would, I think, be rash. For my – how shall I say – my personal system was so distended at the period of which I speak that the distinction between what was inside it and what was outside it was not at all easy to draw. Everything that happened happened inside it, and at the same time everything that happened happened outside it. I trust I make myself plain. I did not, need I add, see things happen, nor hear it, but I perceived it with a perception so sensuous that in comparison the impressions of a man buried alive in Lisbon on Lisbon’s great day seem a frigid and artificial construction of the understanding.3

For all we know, the structure of a table could be that of a temple. With the temporal bone and its muscle; the cyclops’s gaze venturing inside and out; and organs without bodies. And will – itself an inarticulate muscle, twitching. For all we know, Saturn could be a grain, one of a million tumbling away when no one is looking.



Indeed, the spleen. One cannot but commiserate with the foolish melancholic Geometrician, the false Earth-Measurer. It has been claimed that it was not sluggishness that marked her face and posture, not lethargy or boredom; instead, super-lucidity in front of a problem which could not be solved. The lie is in our understanding, and darkness is so firmly entrenched in our mind that even our groping will fail,4 a mournful Dürer had come to realize. In that portrayal, he may have reflected himself, the artist-geometrician, embodied by a morose celestial being paralyzed by its renunciation of what it could reach because it cannot reach for what it longs5. Set within the boundaries of spatial and corporeal quantities, admittance to the metaphysical would be denied.

Pursuit of Wisdom whilst Saturn devours his sons.



Therefore, back to the body.

Accidentally, Werther’s finger touches Charlotte’s, their feet, under the table, happen to brush against each other. Werther might be engrossed by the meaning of those accidents; he might concentrate physically on these slight zones of contact and delight in this fragment of inert finger or foot, fetishistically, without concern for the response (like God – as the etymology of the word tells us – the Fetish does not reply). But in fact Werther is not perverse, he is in love: he creates meaning, always and everywhere, out of nothing, and it is meaning which thrills him: he is in the crucible of meaning. Every contact, for the lover, raises the question of an answer: the skin is asked to reply.6

While wisdom remains fragmentary, yet another sort of geometry unfolds here.

1   Attributed to the Austrian physicist and philosopher Ernst Mach (1838-1916) by fellow scientist Philipp Frank.

2   Quotes taken from Ernst Mach’s essay On Physiological, As Distinguished From Geometrical, Space, in: E. Mach, Space and Geometry in the Light of Physiological, Psychological and Physical Inquiry, Chicago and London, 1906, p. 5–17.

3   Samuel Beckett, Watt, New York, 1953, p. 42-43.

4   A quote from Albrecht Dürer translated by Erwin Panofsky, in: E. Panofsky, The Life and Art of Albrecht Dürer, Princeton, 1955 p. 171

5   Erwin Panofsky, (see note 4), p. 170

6   Roland Barthes, A Lover’s Discourse. Fragments, New York, 1979, p. 67



Martin Ebner, Kitty Kraus
Brochure, 84 pages, English/Lithuanian
CAC – Contemporary Art Centre, Vilnius, 2016

With contributions by Tenzing Barshee, Mihaela Chiriac, Haytham El-Wardany, Monika Kalinauskaitė, Valentinas Klimašauskas, Ariane Müller, Audrius Pocius & Nicholas Matranga

A Sequel to the Story

A Sequel to the Story

Monika Kalinauskaitė


Excitement is incredibly important. It fuels situations and dancing. We are a puddle of momentary happiness at the foot of this column of sound. Every week, dozens of these puddles melt together into a regular Friday. Vapors and thrills surround the column and rise above the city full of full moons.

The engineer of perspectives is also there, somewhere, giving out pamphlets. I never catch her but she is always there. When I grow up, I want to be an engineer of perspectives, said a raven-haired girl, skipping through the yellowing ashes of what was once a story. For a moment I could have sworn she looked all of us in the eyes before casting them back to what was important. The engineer kicked those ashes off and motioned her crew to proceed.

They always show up to purify the scene of a story after all dirty narrative deeds have been done. Starting with the remnants of this small and distant universe, they gathered only the important ones: a single porous palm stuck in a vulgar gesture, someone’s eyes still struggling to escape for the woods, and, of course, the small and vibrant calamity, immediately snatched by a confident hand. The collector of calamities held it, smiling, letting it drip all over her elbow, then sealing it gently in a bottle of ink. The ravenhead giggled. I could have a sworn I giggled with her.

The engineer of perspectives doesn’t concern herself with raising structures – she specializes in being raised by structures. Together with the collector of calamities they approach the universe from a diagonal angle, interjected in a wall of reality. Their gaze travels through the teleport tube and always returns back to one of the many incarnations of earth. They held hands and talked shop.

There are so many shadows of geometry here,” the engineer said. “Someone set out to build a world and left a huge mess for us. Long lines at the bar be damned. Once my glass is full, you better start your collection of shots.”

We can still recover some continuation, though,” the collector replied. “Soon this will glide smoothly, like a long-desired sequel. I like this party a lot, it’s lovely to see so many individuals out there, to watch all their connections emanate and evaporate, all those gazes wandering and returning.”

The engineer of perspectives and the collector of calamities are figures from the pure in-betweenness, the ravenhead explains. They do their best to cast away characters, and yet can function as types of people – such as those who visit exhibitions. They meet there sometimes, retreat to the corners to kiss and play harmless tricks on each other. They know the importance of what fills space to the brim: scattered punches, given or taken, a child hiding doors and maybe a small animal’s patient gaze. I watch how the ravenhead grows up into a fully formed cat. She works in trains now, adjusts the cabin windows just right, so that the light falls straight into the eyeholes of sleeping passengers, goes in through one and leaves at once through another.

During the past year I have switched cities and ambitions. I have redrawn geographies of every emotion, I have circled around a few towers of joy. I haven’t been under the table though. It’s nice here, I just need to follow the ravenhead’s gaze. Change is so unremarkable, I have worn it every day for so long now. Now we are both just dancing in a circular motion, a motion that every column demands. To hell with characters, says the engineer of perspectives, all they do is burn worlds down. The only way to carry a story is to let someone straight into a big secret.

And what a big secret it is, one where all the daily dances start anew and the light suddenly branches and as I recover I am still dripping pearls into my own lap. The collector of calamities gathers them smiling and seals them into those ink bottles. I crack one open and it comes out as bubbling champagne. Shapes only make sense when they are difficult to define, and that is why the column stops.

Let’s go”, the engineer motions.

They finish the cleanup and retreat to their poetic devices. The ravenhead’s gaze shines upon a city full of full moons. I will always be a puddle of momentary happiness in the middle of a big secret, and excitement, more than anything, is extremely important to me.



Martin Ebner, Kitty Kraus
Brochure, 84 pages, English/Lithuanian
CAC – Contemporary Art Centre, Vilnius, 2016

With contributions by Tenzing Barshee, Mihaela Chiriac, Haytham El-Wardany, Monika Kalinauskaitė, Valentinas Klimašauskas, Ariane Müller, Audrius Pocius & Nicholas Matranga

A Faint Thud Towards the Future

A Faint Thud Towards the Future

Haytham El-Wardany


A strong wind rushes through the entrance of a residential building, causing its glass portal to slam violently back and forth. Currents of air run through the corridor, carrying with them broken branches. A bike leaning against the wall falls to the floor, amidst disposed paper cups and swirling tin cans. Bursting through, with each blow stronger than the last, the wind reaches the back-yard door making it rattle heavily in its place. It sweeps through all the crevices of the building, storming around its interiors. The tenants rush to close their windows and doors, in fear of their belongings toppling and falling down. Near the portal is a lamp connected to a movement sensor. This delicate sensor detects the smallest movement in its vicinity and lights the hallway. Throughout this day the windows squeaked, the doors shuddered, and the entrance lamp flashed on and off, as the sensor detected thousands of invisible movements. This building is located in a neighborhood, which has a museum commemorating a crushed revolution that took place over twenty years ago, not before killing thousands of people’s lives.

In the same city where this building stands, sits a woman in a hotel room thinking about the future, while reading a novel called Happy Moscow, by Andrei Platonov. The introduction of this novel tells of a woman who felt lost upon her arrival to Moscow in 1935. This woman was the mother of the famous German historian Wolfgang Leonard, who, according to an anecdote told later by her son, bought a map of Moscow, only to find with surprise that many of the city’s buildings were not indicated, and that the street names have been changed. She would come to realize that the map she held, was an old map from the twenties. After days of meandering, she was momentarily excited to find new maps suddenly appearing in shops, but to her disappointment, these turned out to portray a future Moscow – one to be realized with the completion of the ambitious General Reconstruction Plan. The map represented extravagant buildings, and streets carrying names of people yet to be born. The communist mother drifted in Moscow for many days, lost between the map of the past and the map of the future. The translator in his introduction states that Platonov’s view on the Bolshevik revolution in his novel is equally disoriented, equally lost between a dark past and an impossible bright future.

In front of the museum commemorating the revolution stands Wind looking towards the opposite street, carrying a bagpipe, and attempting to make the voice of history audible to passersby in the rumbling street. Wind thinks that the voice of history which he blows rises clear and loud, but not one of the passers-by appears to notice it. He decides to increase the power of his blowing by grabbing the bagpipe and filling his chest with all of the air around him. Wind mobilizes all his strength, and blows a powerful breath through the pipe. One passer-by feels something passing through her body. She thinks that she might have heard a sound, a faint thud, but she is unsure. A distorted clank of sorts that has been crushed into parts. It sounds like a cry or a hum issued by an inhumane throat. What could it be? She asks herself. The message coming from afar is no longer decipherable, but a call of a pure language, so pure that no one understands it anymore. The passerby examines the sound which she suspects she heard again, hoping to understand what it might carry. She neglects it after failing to, and continues her way towards the future.

The woman sitting in the hotel does not have the strength to walk into town. Everywhere she goes she sees ghosts of a future yet to come. In every city she visits, is a museum, and a memory of an aborted revolution. For a short moment, there had flashed a future in the city skies, before vanishing away again. It took with it all the various reconstruction plans that had been dreamt by many, and had paid its exorbitant price. Exhausted by the scene of all these ruins she sits in her room thinking about the deadlocks of her life and of the city she comes from. She wants to go down to the streets of the city in order to bind its failures to her failures, but she does not know how to. So she goes back to the book she is reading. The young heroine of the novel, whose name also happens to be Moscow, loves the air and likes to listen to the wind. One of her lovers suggested that she should then study aeronautics, because it is the science of the future. Moscow followed the advice, and became a skilled parachutist. Excited by flying, she had tried to light a cigarette in the air, which put a quick end to her new career. Her chefs considered this a breach of the morals of the work. Moscow, who searches for communism of love, ended up working for the Moscow Metropolitan Construction Project. One day she slipped from the scaffolding, which made her fly briefly in the air, one last time, before landing on the ground crushing her leg.

In the museum a major art exhibition is inaugurated by the Mayor of the city, accompanied by a group of ambassadors and celebrities. On display, is a fully functioning copy of a bookstore which played a vital role during the revolution. This bookstore had been the meeting point for debates and discussions. The bookstore copy is made of wood, offering old and new books on art and politics. Occasionally, it also hosts small discussions groups. After the opening, one of the discussion groups was taken by surprise as dozens of journalists stormed the place with their TV cameras, followed by a man in a suit with dyed black hair. The journalists were covering what the official was doing. He grabbed the first book he had come across, while absently listening to explanations from the lady by his side. The official wearily walked a few steps through the place, which had become increasingly crowded with journalists. Two minutes later, he left, followed by the crew of journalists, who left behind them an air of apprehension in the place. The gaze of those who sat behind followed the official as he moved to observe another art work. He is an official who has a position in the government, headed today by the daughter of the ruler, against whom the revolution started more than twenty years ago.

The museum consists of two buildings, separated by a big yard. The passage between the two buildings intensifies the path of the wind passing to and from nearby residential buildings. In the big yard stood a group of workers removing the remains of yesterday’s storm. They swept the broken branches aside, and collected the shards of a window which was left forgotten open. They then lowered a flag from its mast which had been torn, and replaced it with a new one, fixing it through its rope. The young man pulling the rope, hauling the flag up to its place, could still hear a dimmed sound of wind. It sounded like a long exhalation, or a combination of a guttural and a rolling R. The young worker wondered if the air had passed through a magic throat which can iterate these two sounds together. This light gurgling sound reverberated in his pinna, connecting two spaces, and building an intimate relationship between two moments. The sound of wind never comes alone, but is combined with all what joins it on its path. The worker raising the flag, heard the gurgling of the wind, mixed with rustling sound of the trees, the sweeping of his colleagues brooms on the pavement’s surface, the clinging of the metal ring that connects the flag to the mast, and the fluttering of the cloth. The flag of the museum finally reached its position, hanging upright next to the flag of the city and that of the state.

Nose likes to drink, and was invited to participate in the exhibition. She came from a distant place, and did not know what to do, so Nose decided to take a holiday. She strolled through the city, and one day she met Hammer. Hammer invited her to have a picnic in the mountain, and Nose agreed. Hammer brought with him his friends Two Things. Two Things were busy all the way having sex. Whenever the group decided to have a break on the way, Two Things would discover new holes in their bodies and start to have sex using them, amid the laughter of the others. On the road, Stone appeared to the group and asked if she could accompany them. They all agreed. Stone was idling most of the time, letting herself get carried along the way by one of the group members. Sometimes they were having fun standing in a circle and throwing the stone from hand to hand. On one junction Hammer had a terrible accident. He was hit by a car and died. Hammer’s ghost loomed in the place, went through a heavy cloud, and suddenly found himself with other ghosts running away from tear gas. Shots flew everywhere, and blood spurted from every corner. And the battle went on. As Nose had a sip from her bottle, scratching her head trying to figure out what to do, Wind appeared beside the body of Hammer. He told the group that there is a missing pamphlet, which was lost before its distribution because the revolution was crushed. Mountain, watching all that was taking place around him, turned to the group and intervened saying that the pamphlet is in a place he knows in the city, and offered to accompany them. Everyone agreed, and set off on their way back to the city to look for the missing paper.

Thanks to:
Cráter Invertido Collective, Walter Benjamin, Andrej Platonov, Jumana Manna.


Martin Ebner, Kitty Kraus
Brochure, 84 pages, English/Lithuanian
CAC – Contemporary Art Centre, Vilnius, 2016

With contributions by Tenzing Barshee, Mihaela Chiriac, Haytham El-Wardany, Monika Kalinauskaitė, Valentinas Klimašauskas, Ariane Müller, Audrius Pocius & Nicholas Matranga

Walter Benjamin in Bern





Walter Benjamin Konferenz 2019
Universität Bern
26.-29. Juni 2019


Walter Benjamin in Bern

27.-29. Juni 2019, UniS (Universität Bern), Schanzeneckstrasse 1

Ausstellung, kuratiert von Toni Hildebrandt im Auftrag des Walter Benjamin Kollegs

Künstlerische Beiträge von
Florian Zeyfang, Ariane Müller & Martin Ebner

Videos von Aura Rosenberg und Frances Scholz, featuring Lais and Chantal Benjamin


Vor 100 Jahren promovierte Walter Benjamin in Bern über den Begriff der Kunstkritik in der deutschen Romantik. Auf der Flucht vor dem Ersten Weltkrieg bedeuteten die wenigen Jahre in der Schweiz für ihn ein «erstes Exil». Neben seiner Kunstphilosophie konzipierte er mit Gershom Scholem dort auch die «Universität Muri».

In der Ausstellung wird auch erstmals ein kürzlich entdecktes, 1935 gemaltes Portrait Walter Benjamins zu sehen sein.

Die Ausstellung hat keine Vernissage, aber kann vom 27. bis 29. Juni während der Benjamin-Konferenz besichtigt werden, auch ohne an dieser aktiv teilzunehmen.

Gestaltung: Martin Ebner
Konstruktion: Lorenzo Salafia
Organisation: Ariane Lorke
Text: Toni Hildebrandt
Lektorat: Zora Schiffer

Mit freundlicher Unterstützung des Walter Benjamin Archivs Berlin, Akademie der Künste und der Hamburger Stiftung zur Förderung von Wissenschaft und Kultur, des Suhrkamp-Verlags,
des Zentrums Paul Klee Bern und des Staatsarchivs des Kantons Bern

Ariane Müller & Martin Ebner: Kinder, Tiere, Greise als Sammler
für die Walter Benjamin Konferenz 2019, Bern

Walter Benjamin sammelte Kinderspielzeug, ein Zug an ihm, der ihn ein wenig spleenig erscheinen lässt. Gershom Scholem beschreibt in „Die Geschichte einer Freundschaft“ die tiefe innere Beziehung, die er zu den Dingen, die er besaß, hatte. Er liebte es, schreibt er, sie aufzustellen und sie seinen Freunden in die Hand zu geben. Indem er eine Spielsache seines Sohns Stefan herausholte, so schreibt Scholem weiter, entwickelte er im Gespräch philosophische Überlegungen.
Walter Benjamin selbst schrieb und publizierte über Spielzeug, auch unter Verwendung von Abbildungen seiner Sammlung.

Die Lustigkeit aus Schuldbewußtsein kommt bei den albernen Verzerrungen ins Große, Breite vorzüglich auf ihre Rechnung. Wer Lust hat, dem Warenkapital in die Fratze zu sehen, braucht nur an eine Spielzeughandlung zu denken, wie sie bis vor fünf Jahren typisch gewesen und in kleinen Städten noch heute die Regel ist. Höllische Ausgelassenheit ist die Grundstimmung. Von den Deckeln der Gesellschaftsspiele, aus dem Kopf der Charakterpuppen grinsten Larven, lockten aus dem schwarzen Kanonenrohr, kicherten in den sinnreichen »Katastrophenwagen«, die beim fälligen Eisenbahnunglück in die vorgesehenen Teile zerfielen.
Kaum aber hatte hier die militante Bosheit sich verkrochen, so kam der Klassencharakter dieses Spielzeugs an anderer Stelle zum Durchbruch. Die »Einfachheit« wurde ein kunstgewerbliches Schlagwort.

aus: Walter Benjamin, Spielzeug und Spielen. Randbemerkungen zu einem Monumentalwerk 1)
Gesammelte Schriften III, Kritiken und Rezensionen 1912 – 1931