Shout at the Wall – Poetry of the Underground

Event has passed (Fri Feb 8, 2013 - Fri Feb 8, 2013)
Goethe Institut German Cultural Center
Arts, Movies, Film Screening


The exhibit Poetry of the Underground depicts the young and non-established artistic and literary scene of the 1980´s in the German Democratic Republic (former East Germany). During this period most art that wasn’t sanctioned by the State was illegal, or at least unwelcome - mostly for questioning authority. Twenty years after the fall of the Berlin Wall, it was time to document this historical period. The exhibit made its debut in November 2009 in Prenzlauer Berg/Berlin, where the rebellion and uprising against the establishment had begun 30 years earlier: Many renowned artists of today emerged from this art scene: Thomas Florschütz, Ralf Kerbach and Cornelia Schleime, to name a few. To date, the exhibit has traveled to nine other destinations, from New York and Switzerland to Greece.

The exhibit in San Francisco, in conjunction with a second exhibit at Mills College - an independent liberal arts college for women in Oakland – will solely show artwork from woman artists. The exclusive feminine focus of this exhibit does not stem from a specifically feminist view or subliminal feminist ideology, but rather the simple fact that at the time, the art scene was not always perceptive enough to duly recognize women’s artwork. The exhibit presents relatively unknown silkscreens, original graphic posters and portfolios from Magdalene Häfner, Angela Hampel, Sabine Herrmannn, Uta Hünniger, Sabine Jahn, Helga Paris, Mita Schamal, Cornelia Schleime, Heike Stephan, Karla Woisnitza and Tanja Zimmermann.Thomas Günther, Curator (Co-Curators Ingeborg Quaas & Uwe Warnke)

Opening Night reception followed by the film, Gegenbilder (Counter-Images) - GDR Underground Films 1983 – 1989:
In a country where all art and access to art materials was subject to state control, the Super-8 film format provided underground artists with a new form of expression. Counter-Images is a selection of ten Super-8 films made between 1983 and 1989 by young East German artists, musicians, performers and writers, who produced their films outside official channels. Many of the directors in this collection – such as Helge Leiberg, Via Lewandowsky, and Cornelia Schleime – have now become leading figures in the international art world.

Exhibit runs from February 8–25
Opening Night February 7 @ 4pm
F.W. Olin Library, 5000 McArthur Blvd, Oakland
Contact:Janice Braun, Associate Library Director & Special Collections Curator
(510) 430-2047, [email protected]

Exhibit runs from February 11 – March 25
Opening Night February 8 @ 6:30pm
530 Bush St, San Francisco, Art Lounge, Street Level
Contact: [email protected], 415 263-8760
followed by Film screening Gegenbilder at 8:00pm (German Democratic Republic, 1983–1989, 141 min.)
Hours: Monday - Thursday: 10 am - 6 pm; Friday: 10 am - 4 pm