Art and Neighbourhood a tour in Pankow, Berlin

The fear and hope of change in neighbourhoods

Pankow faces substantially different challenges than other districts. It is the district with the highest birthrate in Germany, its population is rather homogenous and expensive lofts are skyrocketing. LocalSmarts’s objectives are to seek out areas of the urban environment undergoing transitional changes and integrate contemporary art into the everyday local experience, opening up the role of art as an educational tool for cross-cultural dialog, social integration, and community cultivation. By a walk through the Pankow district participants will get to know a recent history of artist migration to East Berlin. The walk will wind through untouched to remodeled streets, along the way visiting the Delphi Theatre, a one hundred year old silent movie cinema, and ending with the expansive yet quaint Steinberg community gardens.

This is former East Berlin.

The story begins with artist migration to Berlin, finding temporary places to stay and build their own communities in places with demolition pending. Next we visits place that is changing but not quick enough for the residents and business owners. But still change is on the horizon as prenzlauerberg families are moving away from rising rents and settling down into neighboring Weißensee. As a stop on Gustav Adolf Straße, Delphi theater, one hundred year old silent movie cinema, as a beautiful project by an artist couple, their life project for at least the next ten years to run the building with events. Next, we make our way to the Gartenanlagen, we literally walk out of the city and enjoy the unique, low scenery, talk to host of dinner about story, history and role of this place.

On our walk we have invited Kerstin Lassnig of Urbos, real-estate and cultural consultant, we have a look at the Delphy theatre and hear a bit of their story.