beyond the horizon
Art Project for Heidering Prison, Berlin
Architectural Art Project for the Senate, Berlin
Opening March 2014
A sculpture outdoors and an installation indoors are pictorial, integral parts of a concept which includes the comprehensive societal localisation of the people in Heidering Prison. A wind turbine is a central part of the outdoor sculpture. It serves as a pedestal for a three-dimensional figure, as the point of departure for the photographic operations of the installation in the building’s interior and – finally – as a commercial power generator – the financial basis for a socio-cultural programme in the prison.
1. Outdoor sculpture
A vertical wind turbine is raised on the prison grounds. The turbine is approx. 30 metres high and painted light grey. A somewhat more than life-size figure of a man is standing on the top of the facility, holding its right hand as if shielding its eyes while on the lookout, and whose gaze is plainly far off in the distance. Starting at a particular wind force, the rotor, which is on a vertical axle, begins to turn, and the figure above it revolves with it.
2. Indoor installation
A total of seven safety-glass cylinders, open facing downwards, are distributed throughout the building at selected locations. 360° panoramas are to be seen on the inner surfaces of the cylinders. The panorama images show the landscape around the prison and were taken in the course of a year with a special camera from the rotating top of the wind turbine. The photographs, assembled into panoramas, were taken at different times. The respective lighting atmosphere, weather, different times of day and seasons allow the same landscape to appear in ever-new variations. As the rotor may move while the photos are being taken, they range from slightly unfocused or blurred to complete resolution, depending on the rotation speed. By contrast, when there is no wind, photos with crystal clear definition result. Completely different, individual panoramas of the same landscape are thus affixed to the insides of the seven cylinders. For a complete view of the panorama, the viewer must turn on his or her own axis. In this way, an analogy with the figure on the lookout at the top of the wind turbine arises.
3. Socio-cultural programme
The Brandenburger Heide area is a good location for wind turbines; solid proceeds can be expected from the wind turbine facility in the wake of the Renewable Energies Law. Cultural options for the inmates (live band appearances, artists’ workshops, readings, drawing courses, etc.) are made possible through the profits from wind energy.