In 2021, after a hiatus of many years, the ORTSTERMIN Festival will offer a platform to as many artists and disciplines as possible. With this year’s festival theme, RESET, ORTSTERMIN will also start afresh in terms of its artistic range. “Reset,” of course, means reverting an electronic device to its default settings—which can become necessary if commands and input sequences no longer function properly.
Applied to social systems, however, we have to ask ourselves if a “reset” is even possible. For the time being, society is in a state of suspension. Waiting for the restart, waiting for the return of social life and new encounters, waiting for stores and institutions to reopen. Reduced to our basic needs, we begin to question ourselves and our social interaction: What do I want? What are my goals? What’s important to me? And what do I want to spend my time doing? Is it really a “point zero,” after which everything starts up all over again?
The question raises important societal, social, and ecological issues. Applied to the art establishment and to artistic production, this translates into: what can and should stay the same, what can and must go? What processes can return to their initial state, and what needs to be changed or adapted, both on a small and large scale? What can be reused?
How can we make the most of this opportunity to reposition ourselves, try our hand at current issues, work out new formats, forge new contacts, and develop a cautious way of being together while cutting out the excess or leaving it behind altogether? Are there new artistic formats that already have these aspects?
For the artists participating in ORTSTERMIN 21, these questions are intended as a starting point to approach the topic, initiate a discussion, and present the processes and results to the public. In addition to previous formats such as open studios, exhibitions, events, and guided tours, further modules are in planning for the festival that will offer a closer examination of the term RESET.
Program at the Festival hub
Starting on August 20, 2021, visitors are invited to participate in the festival hubs program, where they can get to know one other and interact while obtaining general information about the festival and its exhibitions, open studios, events, and other program points. The public is free to take part in a straightforward way, i.e. having a coffee together or a meal in a street kitchen, while events are planned to discuss strategies for open artistic work.
Special Projects in Public Space
Cinemas, theaters, dance and concert halls have been closed for a year already. During the festival days, events such as screenings, concerts, theater and dance performances will take place outdoors and be anchored into society again as an integral part of its culture. The public space will be integrated into the festival and used as an exhibition venue. We’ll be bringing the events out onto the street and creating collective experiences.
With its multi-faceted program, this year’s ORTSTERMIN offers a fascinating and individually shaped opportunity to experience and experiment both indoors and out. The public is invited to actively participate in a wide variety of inclusive local explorations of artistic production in public and private space. The aim is to make artistic practice tangible as an instrument for imparting knowledge, research, and cultural tolerance. In addition to the extensive program of exhibitions and events, Moabit will become a lively place for artistic production as part of the ORTSTERMIN festival with a multifaceted professional educational offer free of charge. The festival program attracts people from Moabit as well as interested parties from other parts of Berlin and international guests.