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A large fifth opens the scene and disappears revealing others.

The backdrop is white and luminous, in strong contrast with the black wings, staggered on the stage level. No suspended elements in the lattice, all firmly placed to create sharp and elongated shadows on the ground, shadows from directed and artificial light.

I enter the scene. To allow myself a fluid movement I have to go in alone, I cannot stage a dialogue and move at the same time, repeat a monologue too slowly, preventing the movement of the other actors. We move freely, but without shadow. If you have dirty shoes, you can leave your footprint on black and that will be the only sign of your passage.

I pass the first scenes and the props enter, 28 years of projects. 28.

28 from the black side of the backdrop, which loses depth with the backdrop and almost disappears, and 28 from the white side, bright and full of actors and props, of all the projects born in the black of that empty space. 28 years with and 28 years without a wall.

The scene of a show which, as often happens, is fictional, but conveys a true and universal message. Of who in the shadow of that wall has passed and still passes his entire existence.


“Free space” for Marienne Birthler, Wolfram Putz, Lars Kruckeberg and Thomas Willemeit, is the void left by the deepest wound of their country, but also of mine and of those who have opened other wounds, on the ground and in the head.

A single black block of wall that is cut and moved into different sections becomes white and full of opportunities.

Opportunities that have yet to be found by those who live in Cyprus, in Northern Ireland, between Israel and Palestine, between the United States and Mexico, between the two Koreas. Koreas sisters in the name, whose wall that divides them is the most spectacular of all, because it is physical and sound. In fact, big loudspeakers shoot music from their country every day on the central void, in a crazy and very noisy show, advertising an ending that no one has yet imagined.


Opportunity to present at an important event such as the Venice Biennale, something more than a roundup of good architecture, but a more or less readable message, in an environment designed and cared for in its simplicity, not to leave the viewer indifferent.

The opportunity to get lost in a monochromatic environment with your own colored clothes, without having a shadow of your own, but in the shadow of a known and forgotten story, like that object in your home that you have had for a lifetime in the same position and that it almost doesn't surprise you anymore to have. So those scenes on the stage of the German Pavilion seem to have always been there, ancestors of everything that we have seen in them in recent years. Because perhaps all the German architecture of today comes from there, from that history, and who knows what will become of all the other architectures, of all the divisions that are told to us in this exhibition.

If they all grow there, in the shadow of the wall.

- Chiara SILENO -

German Pavilion © Chiara Sileno for WMMQ

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