Between Land and Sea

Counter-Maps and -Narratives from the Coastline

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Project description

The coastline, the boundary between the land and sea, frames either a piece of land or the sea depending on one’s vantage point. Viewed from land, the port cities of Bremen and Palermo are both firmly situated on the European continent. From the sea, Palermo is more closely tied to Tunis, as both have harbours on the same body of water – the Mediterranean. In this series of five projects, artists and artist collectives have teamed up to contrast prevailing narratives with alternative and nuanced histories of port cities and what they reveal about world trade and migration. Port cities often harbour the wish for transnational connections, economic exchange and a political desire for control – all of which make for a highly charged mixture. The projects by Monika Gintersdorfer (Hamburg/Berlin), Rossella Biscotti (Brussels/Molfetta), the kollektiv orangotango (Berlin/Milan), Lily Abichahine (Beirut) and Simone Mannino (Palermo) begin in the Mediterranean region where they will seek to collaborate or intensify cooperation with local artists and civic organisations. Following the trade routes of Sicilian and Tunisian tomatoes and oranges, they will then travel along the northern European coast to Bremen, and thereby establish a link that represents the highly complex system of world trade of which most citizens and consumers are largely unaware. In November 2021, the first proposals of the resulting collaboration will be presented at the first “Port Cities Summit” at the Dream City Biennale in Tunis and the Biennale Arcipelago Mediterraneo in Palermo. The second “Port Cities Summit” will take place at the start of the 2022 season at Theater Bremen in cooperation with the Overseas Museum in Bremen and the Heinrich Böll Foundation. The event will feature all the theatre productions, performances and video installations created throughout the entire project. In a series of encounters with local and international guests, counter-maps and new narratives will be discussed and presented in the context of the trading history of the Hanseatic city and its relations to countries overseas.

Artistic directors: Eva-Maria Bertschy, Stefan Bläske, Lorenzo Marsili, Jan Goossens, Selma Ouissi, Sofiane Ouissi
Artists: Lily Abichahine, Rossella Biscotti, Monika Gintersdorfer, Simone Mannino, Lorenzo Marsili, Izabela Anna Moren, kollektiv orangotango and others

Additional Events

Port Cities Summit 1, Biennale Arcipelago Mediterraneo Palermo, Dream City Biennale Tunis: 7 – 17 Oct. 2021


  • 28 September, 2022 to 2 October, 2022: Port-Cities-Summit 2

    Theater Bremen und Overseas Museum

    various locations, Bremen


Theater Bremen

Goetheplatz 1 - 3
28203 Bremen (external link, opens in a new window)