What it’s all about:

«What’s the point of poetry?» – do you ask yourself the same question? For that reason, we’ve collected 47 photos with answers from poets throughout Europe in order to read, see, and understand its value. We want to present them in Berlin in the exhibition: «What’s the Point of Poetry? / A European Polyphony. On Display.»

And here’s what happens…

47 Poets from 47 European countries share their thoughts on the question «what’s the point of poetry?» in 47 photos. They’ve created slogans that comment on the state of culture and society in their countries while also keeping poetry in focus. This June at the Berlin Poetry Festival (poesiefestival berlin), their very diverse poetic messages and points of view will be assembled in an exhibition. The photos are demonstrations and acts of solidarity at the same time. There has never been such an exhibition before. It offers the unique opportunity of bringing the variety of European voices and moods together in one place.

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Rules of the game:

The idea for the exhibition came from Sergey Shabohin, a driving force of the «young generation» of Belarusian artists. He laid out the rules as follows: every poet wears a red mask that serves as the common thread throughout the photos. It makes all of the poets accomplices in a unified cause. The poets write their own slogans in their own language and alphabet on a sign and are then photographed with it in a symbolic location.

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Who is taking part:

This project is only possible because of the active role played by a large network of partner organizations, e.g., poetry festivals, poetry centers, and PEN centers throughout Europe. The partners have each chosen a poet from their country, including Tsead Bruinja (Netherlands), Michael Fehr (Switzerland), Nikola Madzirov (Macedonia), Sabine Scho (Germany), and Aleš Šteger (Slovenia) among others.

Why this is a good thing:

With this photo exhibition, we want to strengthen poetry and initiate a discussion that can be held in every country and society. To do this, we need your support! In order to continue the dialogue after its premier in Berlin, the exhibition will hit the road and tour through various countries. There have already been requests from Portugal, Switzerland, Turkey, and the Frankfurt Book Fair.

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What you will be supporting:

Most of the photos are already finished and have been sent to us. We have to do our best to live up to the many wonderful results. For this, we need money to construct an appropriate exhibition that provides the necessary space for the pictures. We already have an exhibition hall in the Academy of Arts (Akademie der Künste) in Berlin. Unfortunately, the architecture and layout of the exhibition, and the required technical equipment are expenses that are not always very affordable. Additionally, there will be translation costs, as the catalogue should be released in German and English, so that the exhibition can tour throughout Europe. We would be delighted if you like the project and could help us make it possible.

Wofür wir Geld brauchen

Die meisten Fotos sind bereits fertig und an uns geschickt worden. Den vielen wunderbaren Ergebnissen müssen wir so gut es geht gerecht werden. Dazu brauchen wir Geld, um eine ordentliche Ausstellung aufzubauen, die den Bildern den nötigen Raum gibt. Wir haben dafür eine Ausstellungshalle in der Akademie der Künste in Berlin. Ausstellungsarchitektur und Technik sind Posten, die leider nicht gerade günstig sind. Hinzu kommen Übersetzungskosten, denn der Katalog soll auf Deutsch und Englisch erscheinen, damit die Ausstellung in Europa auf Tour gehen kann. Wir würden uns riesig freuen, wenn du das Projekt magst und uns hilfst, das möglich zu machen!

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