E-WERK Luckenwalde – the world’s first arts institution generating and using its own renewable power (Kunststrom) to drive ecological change and an artistic programme – have launched a major fundraising campaign to help bring the critically acclaimed beach-opera Sun & Sea to the spectacular neighbouring disused Bauhaus-era Stadtbad this Spring.
On 1-2 May 2021, E-WERK will present Sun & Sea, by artists Rugile Barzdžiukaite, Vaiva Grainyte and Lina Lapelyte, and curated by Lucia Pietroiusti, during Gallery Weekend Berlin. E-WERK needs the support of Kickstarter backers to bring the work to Luckenwalde, for it’s Berlin-Brandenburg and CO2 neutral premiere, following the work’s presentation by Lithuania at the 58th Venice Biennale 2019 for which it won the Golden Lion Award, the top prize for an international pavilion.
“An abandoned swimming pool was one of the location visions for Sun & Sea when we were planning to show it Venice back in 2019. We are extremely happy to fulfil this vision now for the first time at the Luckenwalde’s Bauhaus Stadtbad. This historic location not only highlights the site specificity of the opera, but also enriches it with new meanings and senses.”Rugile Barzdžiukaite, Vaiva Grainyte and Lina Lapelyte, Artists and co-creators of the opera/performance Sun and Sea.
An ecological work at its very core, Sun & Sea takes place on an artificial beach composed through light, architecture and music. In the heat of the midday sun, vacationers sing their stories, unfold their thoughts. As these multiply, everyday micro-events slowly give rise to broader, more distributed anxieties on planetary-scale, anthropogenic climate change. The setting – a crowded beach in summer – paints an image of laziness and lightness. In this context, the message follows suit: contemporary crises unfold easily, softly – like a pop song on the very last day on Earth.
The Kickstarter will ensure E-WERK can bring Sun & Sea to Luckenwalde, taking direct action against and building awareness of climate change, as well as creating opportunities for artists and audiences to make and safely experience a world-class work during the global pandemic.
In return for backing ‘Bring the Sun to Luckenwalde’, Kickstarter supporters can choose from a range of beautifully designed rewards created by Studio Lorenz Klingebiel, in collaboration with Universal Works.
Rewards include embroidered E-WERK patches, a soft, beautifully designed Bauhaus inspired beach towel (in collaboration with The Josef and Anni Albers Foundation), a stylish bucket hat, tastefully sloganed t-shirts, and a workwear Bakers Jacket; an iconic and much desired Universal Works staple which has been reimagined as a limited edition ‘Werk Jacket’ for this special occasion.
The Kickstarter is live until 4th April, 23:59pm kickstarter.com/bringthesun
All of these objects – only available by supporting the campaign and for a short, limited time- are a reminder and nod to E-WERK’s industrial past as well as it’s future.
“We came to this project as we do to most collaborative projects: we meet people that we share an interest with, and it develops organically. E-WERK’s team transformed a former GDR power station into a space for artists and audiences to engage in creative practice, powered by Kunststrom. Universal Works is also very much about understanding the past and mixing it with contemporary ideas. We like to champion small scale production, businesses and arts. We loved Sun & Sea (Marina) at the Venice Biennale, so when E-WERK announced they were bringing it to a former Bauhaus swimming pool, we were honoured to be asked to create a small collection to support this amazing project. The most obvious choice for us to collaborate on was a classic Universal Works Bakers Jacket, a workwear classic and one of the first garments we made as a brand. This style of jacket is synonymous with labour and factories and is a nod to E-WERK’s rich history. With the jacket as a centrepiece, we developed a few other items to reference all things Universal Works and E-WERK! We hope you love it as much as we do! ”commented David Keyte, UW designer and co-founder
For a larger donation, a hosted evening in E-WERK’s iconic Turbine Hall is also available to patrons of the campaign; a private performance of Sun & Sea and brunch tour with Sun & Sea Curator Lucia Pietroiusti or a tour of the Power Station with artist, E-WERK co-founder and Kunststrom creator Pablo Wendel.
“E-WERK Luckenwalde is an example of an institution that thinks ecologically across all levels of its programming and infrastructure. As a concept, it is visionary, inspired and inspiring. A prototype for an art organisation of the future, from which I am learning so much.”Lucia Pietroiusti
The Kickstarter is live until 4th April, 23:59pm kickstarter.com/bringthesun
30 minutes south of Berlin, E-WERK are a key driver in the cultural revival of Brandenburg and are dedicated to taking direct action against climate change and pioneering environmental modes of exhibition making and curatorial practices. Powered entirely by 100% CO2 neutral electricity, Kunststrom, the Berlin-Brandenburg premiere of Sun & Sea will, organisers hope, inspire audiences to take concrete action against climate change. The funding will ensure E-WERK can once again power the Stadtbad with waste heat, light and electricity but this time with 100% CO2 neutral Kunststrom. It will also facilitate the transportation of 75 tonnes of local sand to fill the Stadtbad, along with returning it to its original location, and support a crew of 66 international performers and cultural professionals at a time when culture needs support more than ever to survive.
As well as making the production happen, donations will ensure a number of free tickets for local audiences can be made available, help provide over 60 jobs for artists, cast members and cultural workers and make it possible for E-WERK to host a live stream for those not able to join, but who would like to tune in from across the globe to experience the event.
E-WERK needs to raise 40,000 EUR to ensure the show goes ahead, a thoughtful, emotive performative experience which just a lucky few managed to see at the Venice Biennial 2019 and which was lauded in the New York Times, among other international titles at the time.
Sun & Sea comes to E-WERK Luckenwalde curated by Lucia Pietroiusti, Curator of General Ecology at the Serpentine Galleries, Shanghai Biennale and the Curator of Sun & Sea in Venice in 2019.
“At E-WERK Luckenwalde, we are truly passionate about creating unique and immersive experiences that allow the mind to travel. As you can appreciate, during this time of restrictions, it is extremely challenging to stage performances so please help us make this site specific work happen. It gives us great pleasure to invite you to join our local and international audience to experience this poetic and moving operatic performance centred on climate change.”Katharina Worf, Head of POWER NIGHT, E-WERK Luckenwalde
The Kickstarter will ensure E-WERK can bring Sun & Sea to Luckenwalde kickstarter.com//bringthesun
E-WERK is constantly monitoring the current threat to public health and evaluating the risks of holding such an event. The institution remains optimistic that the production of Sun & Sea will be able to proceed, and will implement all necessary safety measures to ensure responsibility, including limited capacity viewing slots, sanitisation & ventilation after each performance and a track and trace system. If it becomes increasingly apparent that it will still be unsafe to hold the event on 1 May, E-WERK will reschedule the event to the first possible opportunity in 2021 and keep all audiences informed throughout the process. All tickets and donations will remain valid.