Berlin’s cultural calendar is back in full swing. We round up the must-see art shows this October.
FESTIVAL Through art, music, performance and film, online screening and streaming space 3hdTV explores contemporary BDSM and kink. Lasting six days but with a month-long extended programme across different Berlin venues, this so-called ‘power play’ will bring together queer-feminist artists, musicians, performers and S&M practitioners for a series of performances, concerts, workshops and discussions.
Park Center Treptow, Berlinische Galerie, HAU Hebbel am Ufer (HAU4), Wasserspeicher and silent green. Oct 5-31.
The Sun Machine is Coming Down: Art at the ICC
FESTIVAL The sci-fi-looking International Congress Centre has been unused for years but for 10 days this October, the Berliner Festspiele will be breathing life into the building with a hectic mix of performances, films and installations. There’s a great deal to look out for with special performances from the likes of Tino Sehgal and contemporary circus acts by Alexander Vantournhout.
ICC. Oct 7-17.
Counter Gravity: The Films of Heinz Emigholz
EXHIBITION Since the 1970s, Heinz Emigholz has used his films to explore the relationship between spatial experience and consciousness, as well as the gap between ideological expectations and material conditions. Focusing on his architectural films, the HKW will present the films alongside the artist’s notebooks, photographs, production notes and objects.
Haus der Kulturen der Welt. Starts Oct 15.
Basir Mahmood: Good ended happily
ARTIST TALK The Pakistani artist will be talking about his latest film Good ended happily, based on the US Navy SEAL operation to kill Osama bin Laden in his Abbottabad compound. The artist will be in conversation with curator Hajra Haider Karrar.
Kindl Brauerei. Oct 20, starts 19:00.
Renée Green: Inevitable Distances
EXHIBITION Stretching right back to the 1980s, the texts, installations, films and sound works of Renée Green have investigated collective memories, cultural stories and questioned the power of cultural institutions. For Green, art is an exploratory tool that questions and probes while also finding alternative forms of being and becoming.
Daadgalerie. Starts Oct 23.
Understudies: I, Myself Will Exhibit Nothing
GROUP SHOW This show allows curator Iman Issa, nominee for the Preis der Nationalgalerie in 2017, to reflect on her own methodology through the prism of a large-scale group show. Putting a focus on artists who create their own universes within their work, Understudies: I, Myself Will Exhibit Nothing will include illustrations, portraits and self-narration.
KW Institute for Contemporary Art. Starts Oct 23.
Friendship. Nature. Culture: 44 years of the Daimler Art Collection
EXHIBITION To celebrate this not-so-significant anniversary, a new exhibition will look back at the development of this internationally renowned, corporate collection. Featuring the work of around 70 artists, this show will span the history of the collection, from its roots in southern German modernism, through to abstract-minimalism, and including its contemporary focus on international photography and media art.
Daimler Contemporary Berlin. Starts Oct 23.
Birgit Kleber: Woman
EXHIBITION The Haus am Kleistpark’s Project Room will be presenting a series of works by the Berlin-based photographer. Kleber is best known for her arresting portraits of women who attempt to free them from their roles as objects.
Haus am Kleistpark. Oct 29 – Dec 12.
Helmut Newton: Legacy
EXHIBITION Delayed as a result of the pandemic, the opening of the Helmut Newton retrospective at his own foundation will now take place on what would have been the photographer’s 101th birthday. Focusing on Newton’s fashion photography, the exhibition will include his portraiture and nudes and a series of his Polaroids.
Museum for Photography. Starts Oct 31.