Spielclub Oranienstraße 25

a playable model city, plus exhibition

16 November 2019–19 January 2020

Event Series

nGbK, Oranienstraße 25, 10999 Berlin


Vivian Chan, Valeria Fahrenkrog, Marieta Campos Gisbert, Christina Harles, Khansa Humeidan, Claudia Hummel, Paula-Marie Kanefendt, Marcos García Pérez, Heather Purcell, Zsófia Puszt, Georg Scherlin, Moritz Scheuermann, Ximena Gutiérrez Toro, Susana Vasquez Torres, Weiqi Wang, Florian Wüst, Mingjie Zhou

Project group

Valeria Fahrenkrog, Moritz Gramming, Katharina von Hagenow, Claudia Hummel, Marcos García Pérez

The »AG Spielumwelt« [PlayEnvironment project group] existed at the nGbK (formerly NGBK) from 1969 to 1972. Its founding ideal was to develop artistic practices with and for children, so as to raise critical awareness of capitalism’s effects. Instead of the illusions the toy industry promised, children were to build a realistic play environment – a space where they would acquire self-confidence enough to handle the challenges of everyday life. So a loft space was rented at Kulmerstr. 20a in Berlin-Schöneberg and, over the following months, artists and children from the neighbourhood met in this so-called »Spielklub« [PlayClub], to build a model city. There was a bank, a theatre, a hotel, a wholesaler’s, a kindergarten, a waffle stand, a photography studio, Maier’s wallpaper shop and a boxing ring. Money was printed – the ›Kulmer Mark‹ – and from this moment on, the kids called their Spielklub ›Das Fest‹ [The Party].
The revival of the »Spielklub Kulmer Strasse« takes the form of a 2-month experimental set-up, the »Spielclub Oranienstrasse 25«, for which the nGbK exhibition space will be transformed into a symbolic model of the Oranienstrasse. Local school classes will spend PlayDays there, devising ways to deal with current urban development issues in Berlin and, more specifically, in the Oranienstrasse, for example, housing policy, rent levels and participation in movements for social change.
A parallel exhibition will examine the historic »Spielklub Kulmer Strasse« and the broader discursive framework of the 1970s in which it articulated its aims.
The »Spielclub« is open to school classes on weekdays, and to the general public (children, parents, professionals and any other interested persons) from 15:00, and on weekends. Everyone is welcome to drop by and discover the broad-ranging scope of the Spielclubs’ education and outreach programs, past and present. The grand finale will be a talk between the Spielclub artists of then and now – and a children’s party.


Saturday, 23 November 2019, 14:00-17:00
»Fotoakademie für Kinder und Jugendliche« with Valeria Fahrenkrog and Zsófia Puszt

The Photo Academy invites children and youngsters aged 8–13 to produce a photographic record of the Spielclub’s symbolic reconstruction of the Oranienstrasse. How do photos of city situations and streets look? Which details catch our eye when we wander about in urban space? The workshop will end with a small exhibition.

Saturday, 23 November 2019, 14:30
Guided tour of the exhibition about the historic ›Spielklub‹
with Claudia Hummel

Everyone is welcome to join this guided tour, also the parents of children taking part in the concurrent Photo Academy workshop.

Tuesday, 26 November 2019, 18:00
Reading and talk
»Kunst+Unterricht lesen« with Claudia Hummel and Paula-Marie Kanefendt

In 1981 an article in the art education journal »Kunst+Unterricht« [Art+Teaching] presented »Build Your Own City«, a venture initiated by the so-called »Test Model for Artists’ Further Education« (now, the Institute for Art in Context). The parallels and overlap between the work of Art in Context and the nGbK on this pedagogic issue have largely been lost from view; yet in the 1970s both groups pursued concepts and experiments in the field of left-wing, utopian education, which were informed by contemporary art strategies. In the framework of the »Spielclub Oranienstraße 25«, Claudia Hummel and Paula-Marie Kanefendt present material from »Kunst+Unterricht« and invite discussion of these almost forgotten documents.

Saturday, 30 November 2019, 14:00-17:00 - Part 1
and 11 January 2020, 14:00-17:00 - Part 2
»Fanzine Werkstatt« with Zsófia Puszt and Marcos García Pérez

The workshop takes its lead from the Spielklub magazine and the »Hau zu Keule« [Club It Keule!] comics, which were published in the 1970s during the Spielklub era and the 10-day »Feste« [Parties] it gave rise to. Children and adults produced articles, comics and leaflets about their game; and children’s realities were reported on, too.
The fanzine workshop will take place on two different days during the Spielclub event. One fanzine will be produced on each day. Which situations did you face at Spielclub? What happened in the course of the PlayDay? How can you portray all of this in your drawings, prints, collages, photos and writing?

The workshop is open to children, teenagers, parents, teachers and neighbours who have spent a PlayDay at »Spielclub Oranienstraße 25«.

Tuesday, 3 December 2019, 19:00
FilmClips, Lecture, Discussion
»Stadtkinder – Stadt der Kinder« with Florian Wüst

Florian Wüst introduces portrayals of children in 1950s and 60s public information and doc films about urban development: from the “yesteryears” of the late 19th century through to the “tomorrow” of post-war modernism.

Saturday, 7 December 2019, 15:00
Guided tour of the exhibition
with members of the Spielclub project group

Tuesday, 10 December 2019, 18:00
»Rethinking Vermittlung – Vergangenheit / Gegenwarten / Zukünfte« with Paula-Marie Kanefendt

The workshop is designed for people who work in education and outreach.
Since its inception the nGbK has taken an acute interest – and a pioneering role – in the exploration of educational issues both theoretical and practical. Numerous records of ground-breaking, socio-political concepts and of pedagogic approaches informed by contemporary arts of the day can be found in the nGbK archive. The »Spielklub« is one impressive example of this. These records also reveal the nGbK’s history of intense and in part highly controversial discussion of how the work of education and outreach and that of curating or producing art may intersect. This closed workshop draws on selected documents from the nGbK archive in order to open up space for a rethink of education and outreach in various pasts, presents and futures.

Saturday, 14 December 2019 and 11 January 2020, 10:30 – 13:30
»Vermittlung für Menschen mit Beeinträchtigung« with Marieta Campos Gisbert

A guided tour of the exhibition will serve to introduce the playing field. Then current issues of urban development will be explored in a Spielclub game of role-play.

Wednesday, 8 January 2020, 10:00-13:00
Introduction to the Seminar Content
Event space, 1st floor
Wednesday – Saturday, 15-18 January 2020, 10:00 – 17:00
Open Seminar
Exhibition space and event space, 1st floor
»Wiederaufführung als künstlerische Methode der Re-Lektüre künstlerisch-edukativer Geschichte« with Claudia Hummel, Heather Purcell and Moritz Scheuermann

The »Spielclub Oranienstraße 25« is a revival of the »Spielklub Kulmer Straße« project of 1970/71. Although comprehensively documented in its day, this pilot project was long overlooked in studies of the history of art education and outreach, a broad-ranging field only recently the object of renewed professional interest. Whatever was not recorded in writing remains in the memories of former specialists; but even then, it is difficult for present-day professionals to draw on as a benchmark for their own working methods.
What does a revival make tangible and real? Which translations are necessary in order to reveal the reasoning behind earlier experiments? This open seminar is designed for artists, (trainee) education and outreach workers, and students of art education. The aim is to develop multiple perspectives on the present project: through practical experiment and discussion, and translation of the insights gained into artistic forms. The seminar will hopefully conclude with an encounter between the Spielklub artists of 1970/71 and 2019/20.

Saturday, 11 January 2020, 14:30
Guided tour of the exhibition about the historic ›Spielklub‹
with Claudia Hummel

Everyone is welcome to join this guided tour, also the parents of children taking part in the concurrent Photo Academy workshop.

Saturday, 18 January 2020, 15:00-17:00
Walk and Talk
»Wiedersehen mit der eigenen Arbeit« with »Spielklub Kulmer Straße« artists (1970/71): Klaus Böllhoff, Gernot Bubenik, Peter Möbius, Sybill Möbius, Dietmar Roberg, Ann-Kathrin Scharwächter; Spielclub project group members and »Spielclub Oranienstraße 25« Game Guides

On the penultimate day of the project, the artists behind the »Spielklub Kulmer Straße« and others involved in the AG Spielumwelt [PlayEnvironment project group] of 1970/71 are invited to view the results of the revival and then to join the makers of the current model city and exhibition in intergenerational discussion. Topics to be covered include the similarities and the differences between the Spielclubs of 1970/71 and 2019/20; social structures; childhood; the role of artists in society; and critiques of capitalism, then and now.

Sunday, 19 January 2020, 14:00
Guided tour by children for children and adults
»Unser Spielclub«

Sunday, 19 January 2020, 15:00-17:00

The kids in the Kulmerstrasse neighbourhood called their Spielklub the ›Party‹. And this was also the name of the two 10-day Spielklub happenings held in spring 1970 in the Märkischen Viertel [district] of Berlin, and in autumn 1970 on Dennewitzplatz [square] in Schöneberg. Cake-eating for the chosen few was presented there as a provocative game. The »Spielclub Oranienstraße 25« likewise ends with a children’s party – a final opportunity to play. And there’ll be a cake, too – perhaps big enough this time for everyone to have a piece.

Financed by

Supported by