Schlossplatz IV, 2014
The angles of tourists’ photos mapped onto the site along with Palast der Republik’s footprint, defined by the events of the interim use phase (2003-2005).
Pen and pencil on paper, 120 x 140 cm
Photographer Jens Ziehe
“The empty space around which Fassler’s current drawing series revolves is the building site of Berlin’s reconstructed City Palace — currently a wide, windy, indeterminate area in the middle of the city that hundreds of tourists aimlessly pass through daily, but that remains largely empty. The Palace Square is a sore spot and at the same time a place of transit in more ways than one: Berlin is hallmarked by urban planning projects that have attempted to leave their mark on the city’s identity. The Prussian kings, the National Socialists, and the government of the GDR all tried to reshape the city in their image. Since the Wilhelminian era, it has been a tradition here to eradicate the legacy of the preceding generation and put forth a new historical concept. The various structures that were created during these different periods and forms of government, however, remain behind as elements in a cityscape that is fundamentally heterogeneous to this day.
In CIRCLING THE VOID, Fassler addresses not only the act of erasing recent history, but also the discrepancy between the visions of city planners and actual experience in the location. Over a period of months, she visited the Palace Square daily, closely observing people, changes, and details in the area, taking note of the movements of passersby, locations of the shell game street scams, police interventions, the angles from which tourists take their pictures, stickers, logos, posters, temperatures, the course of light and shadow. Fassler additionally recorded her impressions of everyday events as well as minor dramas, moments of loneliness, fear, or comedy.
In her drawings, which always take on the “planner’s” godlike bird’s eye view, these notations from a wide range of moments and perspectives overlap in various constellations. The spectrum extends from light, geometrically formed grids reminiscent of spider webs to an almost psychoric-seeming allover comprised of the lines, notes, and drawing that have become more and more central to Fassler’s work. In her most recent pieces she creates a symbiosis of documentation and composition, while the drawing series can be read equally as a testimony to the time, artistic meta-narrative, and formal experiment”.
- excerpt from SEPTEMBER press release 02.05.2014