Selbviert, 2009


Selbviert was proposed as a public sculpture to be realized in front of the façade of the new headquarters of Germany’s Federal Intelligence Service (BND) on Berlin’s Chausseestraße. There were four positions provided for sculptures to be located on square platforms in regular distances. The platforms bound the complex’s terrace facing the Pankepark greenspace. Dealing with the requirements and the premises of the architectural setting I proposed to use four three-dimensional objects (height ca. 450 cm each, lengths between 7 and 9 m) of identical shape. The shape chosen is well-rounded on all sides, bringing to mind boulders. This impression, however, is at odds with the size, materiality, and appearance of the objects, which consists of steel coated with translucent paint. The viewer who encounters the sculptural objects would not be able to grasp the entire form from one perspective. She would need to move around the objects in order to experience the whole form. All the more so as each of the four objects is slightly displaced from the center of its platform’s surface, engendering a rhythmical tension between them, a lineament that disrupts the perfect symmetry of the terrace and the building as a whole. In this way, the objects’ shapes and arrangement act as a counterpoint to the rigid geometry of the architecture, while retaining a correspondence with the facade, to which the use of light-colored natural stone and champagne anodized aluminum lends an unexpected flow. They are prominently visible from inside the building as hollow bodies whose shells reflect the surroundings. Despite their dimensions, the objects touch their bases only in minimal footprints.



In situ at the new building of the Bundesnachrichtendienst (BND), Berlin

4 elements, stainless steel, 4 different transparent color coatings

Each approximately 450 × 700–900 cm

Poster design © Julia Fuchs