Assistance I-VIII (Hilfestellung)
Artproject for a school sports center at Kniprodestraße 27, Berlin-Pankow

Client: Senate Department for Urban Development and Environment/Senate Department for Education, Youth and Science, Berlin. Architect: Ingrid Hentschel, Hentschel-Oestreich Archcitects

Steel, laser cut, varnished; Painting on concrete; Berlin, August 2016

The sports center belongs to two different Berlin vocational schools: Elinor Ostrom-School and Jane Addams School. The starting point for my art project are the large, floor to ceiling glass doors that divide the long corridors of the building. I projected the contour of the door frames on the walls like distorted silhouettes, which playfully interrupt the stressed vertical perspectives of architecture. Within this framework I placed symbolic figures like shadows of drawings, etched imaginary into the glass surfaces of the doors. All "silhouettes" are from laser cut steel, vanished in a dark gray and placed in front of the walls. So they get a strong sculptural presence.

The access doors to the different floors are normally closed, but the smoke control doors in the hallways are permanently open. That means that a part of the art piece would be behind the glass of the door - like a picture. So I changed my idea and decided to work "only" with painting here, not with metal elements. I inverted the color to have bright objects on a dark (reflecting!) background. The door frame becomes a picture frame.

In school sports is the cooperation of the participants of particular importance. This applies not only to team sports. Many individual exercises can be practiced only by assistance. My figures are in a mutual dependency of support or balance and it´s not always clear who provides assistance here.

Part of the work was a participative project with students of the Elinor Ostrom-School. They posed for the figures, so their faces are portraits of some students.

Wolf von Waldow 2016

Begründung der Juryentscheidung durch Sven Kalden, Vorsitzender des Preisgerichts:
„Die an den Flurtüranlagen verorteten Schattenrisse haben die Kraft, die streng orthogonale Architektursprache aufzubrechen und den Fluren einen spannenden Charakter zu verleihen. Die leicht zugänglichen Motive der Schattenrisse thematisieren kritisch und zugleich humorvoll verschiedene Aspekte des Sports, was insbesondere von den Schulen begrüßt wird. Bei der künstlerischen Ausgestaltung werden die Türen in ein intelligentes Spiel aus Relief und Schatten eingebunden. ... Insgesamt erfüllt die Arbeit in herausragender Weise den Anspruch der Auslobung, die Wahrnehmung des Gebäudes durch die Präsenz der Kunst zu stärken.“