Naked We Came And Naked We Will Depart

Berlin is now facing a complicated situation that is beyond “sexy.” Rent prices have been getting higher and higher and people are complaining about the raise of living costs. Many long-time Berliners blame the international attention dragged to Berlin and fear that the place they call home is being invaded. On the other hand, the expats find themselves in a environment hard to adapt and fail to merge with the existing community. When a crisis is soon to peak, it’s time to seek alternatives. Lucky for Berlin, the artistic community is bursting with ideas and wants to tackle these difficult issues. Even if it means to completely strip down and bare it all. The public, YOU, are also implicated in this “bare” art performance by three expats from Australia at Platoon Kunsthalle.
Some place the responsibility on the government and demand urgent political measures. Others will just decide to move to others locations. Most will just adapt somehow to the new setting. But only a few are willing to deeply analyze this kind of urban problem and engage in a search for a solution that goes beyond temporary measures. They refuse just to go with the flow and ask to the world: “How is it to live in a city?” They want to discuss the essentials of what it means to live in a community.
And this is exactly what Penny Harpham, Kat Henry and William McBride are doing right now. Confined in the 10-day durational live-art piece, they offer a debate about sharing urban spaces, they offer a critic to consumerism, they offer “Deliverance.” Although the concept and the related issues are very complex, the rules of the game are quite simple: Put a trio in a marked space of 30 squared meters and keep them there for 240 hours. They began completely naked, with no food, no water, no bed, no objects, no shelter. They can’t leave the space, but they can receive guests, that are asked to bring them everything they could need. Their comfort (and survival) is 100% in the hands of the public audience.
This is not a play, what they live is real. Since this performance is just a controlled experience, maybe it doesn’t give us right away any answers on how we can improve society. But it certainly raises hundreds of questions… For a happy and full life, how much do we really need?
If you are curious to meet the artists – or if you want to support them – you have until next Wednesday (August 15th) to visit them outside of Platoon Kunsthalle on Schönhauser Alle 9. If you don’t have time or live to far for that, you can still follow them by Livestream here.