Since the fall of the Wall in 1989 Berlin has become the artistic magnet of Europe. Not only did affordable rents initially attract artists to this city, but also a semi-liberal artistic climate in combination with endless open space contributed to rise of Berlin as hotspot for the arts. Walking through the city, it seems as if art is literally unfolding itself like a colorful kaleidoscope on every corner. In recent years, a vivid and sophisticated gallery scene has emerged contributing vitality and diversity to the art world. Berlin’s unique gallery landscape spans from small private initiatives hidden in obscure courtyards and basements, to larger, more established ventures, and everything in between. In spite of the fact that Berlin hardly has an international buying clientele, cultural richness seems continuously to flourish nonetheless, and a global clientele is flown in twice a year during two important art fairs: The Gallery Weekend in the beginning of May and the Berlin Art Week in September—the former, a joint program of simultaneous openings across town clustering about fifty of the city’s galleries and the latter, a mixture of an art fair and a small biennale.
Like most things in Berlin the gallery scene is fragmented and diverse. This exclusive tour brings you to the most important gallery hubs of Berlin, so we reserve the right to alter the course of the tour depending on the strength of current shows and on the major art events of the season. For example, your art historian guide may decide to start your journey in Mitte, in the Auguststraße, where we will uncover a wealth of galleries and institutions. From Kunst Werke, a contemporary art institution founded in the early 1990s showing a wide range of art from mixed media retrospectives to giant installations and sound performances, allowing innovation and curatorial creativity running across five floors, we can move on to several smaller and more intimate galleries in the vicinity of this institution in both the Auguststraße and Linienstraße such as Eigen+Art and ifa Galerie. The tour route might also include festivals (such as the Berlin Biennale when its in town or the Berlin Art Week).
Another potential focus of the tour (again at the discretion of your expert art historian guide) is Potsdamer Straße. Over the past five years this strip has gained increasing momentum caused by an enormous wave of gallerists which moved from Mitte to the area South of the Neue Nationalgalerie. Today, a true gallery mile includes about thirty galleries and project spaces scattered around an unpolished neighborhood. We may visit (again, depending on the exhibitions) renowned galleries such as Esther Schipper, Isabella Bortolozzi, Gitti Nourbakhsch, Guido Baudach, Arndt, Plan B, Tanya Leighton and Klosterfelde. Through your dialogue with an art historian familiar with the Berlin’s art world, this walk aims to give you insight into contemporary art practices within Berlin’s expanding art scene.