This evening, was the second day of a weekend round-up of performances, music, video projects and installations by Playground Berlin, held at Mica Moca. After battling some jetlag, I arrived at the venue just in time for Paul Polaris & Trabant Echo – “von und zu“. The performance featured three different individuals; one on guitar, a dj spinning ambiant music, and a girl (Paul Polaris) who was assembling objects. The music acted as her tailored soundtrack and she transported objects from an organized pile and balanced them carefully one by one. The objects consisted of round plaster disks, pipes, and pieces of cut wood.

Paul moved slowly, deliberately as the objects moved from one location to another. The room was completely silent except for the strumming guitar and dj who both occasionally made scratchy noises using their instrument of choice. We all watched intently until the structure (shown above) tumbled to the ground, pieces strewn across the space. Without missing a beat, she continued, piece by piece re-balancing and moving the elements from one space to another. The act of distinct movement and the tension to constitute inevitable failure, were both exciting and methodically relevant to the structure of the work. During live performance, almost anything is possible and what one my deem failure is actually just another element which makes the piece exist, not unlike a brushstroke to canvas.
At the end of an hour long task of building, balancing and re-building, the ritualistic structure was formed, as shown above. The audio followed Pauls’ movement at times reaching a crescendo. Lastly she walked to the wall and made a drawing with black chalk. Underneath she wrote: La Rotunda, which is Italian for the “roundabout” often used to describe a traffic circle.
The final performance of the evening was EMW Orchester-Rite, including projected visuals, electro-acoustics (both live and electronic) and an oboe player. The large-scale projections were on the farthest wall and were coordinated to the dance, electro musical soundtrack. A box was set up between the audience and the screen and as the performance commenced, people started lining up to peer into the light emitting black shape.

Finally intrigued, I went up and peered into the shape. Inside a small projection of a performance was taking place; performance inside a performance. The image rotated and danced due to the reflective surrounding interior and the experience of watching was as if looking into a kaleidoscope. Lovely.
Curators Marcela Donato and Kunstraum Richard Sorge did a fantastic job and each performance, as well as the installations including another favorite by Mia Morikama and Constance Marx, were a great introduction into the contemporary art scene and a nice escape from the busy streets of Berlin, upon entering into a reconstructed art haven.
More from B E R L I N soon