Peace Doves, Flower Throwers und Nefertiti with Gas Mask – a 14km Street Art Workshop
On the last weekend of June 2014 a Street Art Workshop under the title of “Against Exclusion! Transcending walls and building bridges via Street Art” took place in Berlin-Friedrichshain. It was held by 14 km in cooperation with the Egyptian El Takeiba Centre for Artistic and Cultural Development, the youth club Jugendclub Feuerwache and the beach club YAAM (both in Friedrichshain) in an endeavor of showing the young participants ranging from the age of 13 to 17 a modern and artistic way of protesting and commenting on life conditions that they might dislike or be critical of.
The workshop has been a complete success as the participants received the content through an active learning methodology and supporting material; our main rationale was showing the participants how can they reject something yet be ready to express this view through art and painting. At the same time, the participants had the chance to familiarise themselves with the role of street art as a political instrument in the so-called “arabellions”.
The first day started at the youth club with an introduction about graffiti and its role in the Arab protest movements with examples of different graffiti paintings and stencils from the Egyptian and Tunisian revolutions. It was followed by a workshop where the participants were taught by a professional graffiti artist (Pjotr Obuchoff) how to make their own stencils and try them out on wooden plates. They were working side by side and had lots of fun with the multicultural team of 14km, including members from France, Egypt, Great Britain, and Germany, and Ahmed Hassen from the El Takeiba Center in Egypt, who is visiting 14km via an Anna Lindh exchange scholarship. We finished in the evening with a nice open air barbeque at the youth club.
The second day started with a joint walk along the Berlin wall, where the young participants approached the famous symbol of the German separation and the graffiti paintings of the East Side Gallery by means of a “Wall-Quiz”. On arrival, everyone was ready to finish cutting their stencils and embark on the spraying part and we had the luck to have an “authorized graffiti area” in form of a wall available for the workshop, thanks to the generosity of the YAAM beach club which is located close to the East Side Gallery of the Berlin wall. There, everyone started spraying their own stencils, tags, and even some styles, with some being positively surprised by the rewarding stencil technique which enables even the less talented ones among us to produce impressive artistic outcomes very quickly. Thus, the day ended with an extremely colorful outcome and many happy faces, and with a 14km team proud to have achieved both our artistic and intercultural aims.
More photos are available on our Facebook page.
This is a project of the Local Action Plan (‘Lokaler Aktionsplan’) Friedrichshain-Kreuzberg