One hundred years ago the Bauhäusler worked together in an interdisciplinary community to establish a new concept of design that would impact all areas of life, society and the political system. They looked for a modern, democratic design which would not only meet everyone’s basic needs, but also offer modularity so as to preserve the individuality of each person. In view of our increasingly heterogenous society, SoliPolis aims to update this search with various event formats in the Hamburg district of Veddel, an Elbe River island with a population of 5,000 inhabitants from over 60 nations. As one of the poorest districts in Hamburg, Veddel receives little attention from the rest of the city, although it serves as a model for respectful, harmonious coexistence in a highly diverse neighbourhood. In an extraordinary collaboration between the Protestant Church Hamburg-Ost, the Deutsches Schauspielhaus in Hamburg and the Veddel church congregation, the NEW HAMBURG festival has been developing art and discussion formats with local residents of Veddel since 2014. Its central themes include public safety, access to infrastructure (also for isolated and economically disadvantaged people) and cultural participation. Based on current debates about the concept of “Solidarity Cities”, the festival organisers wish to focus discourse on international ideas and methods for a more equitable coexistence and develop it together with the community and policy makers. The festival will feature two theatre projects in which amateur and professional actors present themes based on an increasingly divided society. In a workshop, artists will join craftspeople, creative artists and activists to develop artistic works for display in public areas. A concert series and shared dinners will promote dialogue between the festival goers. The various elements of the festival aim to transport the Bauhaus idea of equal design opportunities to the here and now and demonstrate the necessity of democratisation in all areas of life.
Artistic directors: Sina Schröppel (DE) and Nina Reiprich (DE)