Quartier für Vielflieger

Quartier für Vielflieger - Nests for the Frequent Flyers

Quartier für Vielflieger is a participatory public art project which was realized in 2010 in the neighborhood of Kreuzberg, Berlin. In this project, we invited inhabitants of the area to show their hospitality to migratory birds in very different ways, mainly building a shelter in our carpenter studio.

In Turkey and its neighboring countries, birdhouses enjoy a century-long tradition. These tiny but highly decorated houses were constructed on the facades of public buildings as one of the typical architectural features. Within the striving urban life, they should protect birds from adverse weather conditions and hungry cats. Inhabitants of those shelters often are migratory birds, which spent each winter in warmer regions. As temporary guests people welcomed them in a friendly way - a carrying human gesture towards the free migrants of the sky. Also around the Kreuzberg- Kottbusser Tor, people - like migratory birds - are sharing the experience of departing and arriving, and the experience of being dependent on sharing the hospitality of other human beings.

The project was a structure into 3 phases,
1) we made -one day events- by many local associations to inform more participants about the 2nd phase. We had an origami, water marbling, participatory drawing workshop, and a lecture about the Turkish birdhouses, and an excursion in Kreuzberg to be able to see which immigrant birds live in the area. This process also created a link among local associations in the area.

The second phase was the core of the project. It integrated 2 different workshops. One was a birdhouse-building workshop and the other one was a sound-editing workshop.
The birdhouse-building workshop was a week-long workshop and we organized 3 different groups of participants. The sound-editing workshop was a 1-week workshop. We made an open call and some artists interested in the theme and wanted to make the workshops. The workshops were run with artists as couples! Before the workshops started we organized a meeting-discussion with the artists, a social anthropologist, a social worker, and a Nabu member (Nabu is a Natural Life Protection Association which is active in whole Germany, they supported the project from the very first stage). In the meeting, we discussed the process and the main idea underneath the workshops, which was improving tolerance and solidarity.

In the end, a symposium, a film screening, and an exhibition took place. The exhibition showed the products (the birdhouses-sound pieces) and the documentation of the project. In the symposium, there was a screening of documentary movies about homeland and a discussion about migration and hospitality. We also presented our publication at the end of the events.

Now the birdhouses are waiting for permission to be placed in the Centre of Kreuzberg where we realized the workshops.
Date: May to October 2010
Events: Preliminary events; Origami & Water Color Painting-(Ebru) Workshops, Excursion, Lecture about traditional birdhouses in Ottoman Era as. Main Events; Birdhouse-building Workshops, Sound-editing Workshop, Symposium & Exhibition in Kreuzberg Museum