Cine Palais Duisburg

with KARO* Architekten, 2007

Together with KARO* Architekten I took part in the art competition "Paradoxes of the public - Art in public spaces". Organized by the city of Duisburg (Germany), it dealt with a growing division of public space into different fragments while public and private space are telescoped into each other.
These changes force us to investigate a different perception of public space and look for ways in which art and architecture can move in this crisis-ridden paradox and constantly reconquered space. For it is through this quest for the status of public that art keeps "the public" alive.
Especially in consumer spaces such as shopping malls new social forms are developing. Our project deals with the new "Duisburg City Palais", which is not only a shopping mall but also includes restaurants, a casino and the „Mercator hall“, an event, concert and conference centre that is currently hosting the Duisburg Philharmonic Orchestra.
The City Palais is trying to incorporate the insignia of public space very hard but at the same time the working class and immigration milieu of the area is not present at all.
The installation, a small pavilion, adapts attributes of this very big-headed but ordinary mall architecture (compatible logos, surveillance, cinema aesthetics) and uses them as media for social interaction. It is trying to give an insight in the new so called public space from a square outside the building. Using existing surveillance cameras we transform the mall into a stage. It can be used for drama or dance performances, politic statements, love messages and nonsense. It provides a platform for professional, commerce, non-profit, public and private performers and invites people to change roles from consumers into private ambassadors. The camera sequences from the inside are transmitted by the main server to the pavilion onto a range of monitors where people outside can choose their favourite “movies“ within certain intervals via mobile (comparable with the MTV video battle). This way the public decides what is being watched on the LED screen in the back, that transforms the plaza into open air cinema.

© KARO Architekten
© KARO Architekten