Live broadcasts / candle campaign / start of ring walk
Starting in mid-morning, Augustusplatz square is going to be the central meeting point, with live broadcasts of the ceremonial act (11 a. m.) and of the Peace Prayers (5 p. m.) as well as with an introductory video for the Leipzig Festival of Lights. In addition, a video clip will be presented showing historic moments of change in East Germany as well as in Central and Eastern Europe, providing information on the installations and performances along the inner ring road.
‘Frieda’s Winter’ / Performance, drama, light, video and audio / westfernsehen, Leipzig
Near the residential buildings at Georgiring the artists’ group westfernsehen is going to deal with the constant surveillance and control by the SED (East German communist party) regime. This was the place where during the Monday demonstrations the ‘Kampfgruppen’ (combat groups) were positioned, who were watching the demonstrators closely while waiting for their commands.
‘CCTV – A Trail of Images‘ / Video installation / !Mediengruppe Bitnik, Zurich
Next to the Wintergarten residential tower, which in the times of the East German state also accommodated ‘conspirative flats’, the Swiss !Mediengruppe Bitnik is placing the issue of surveillance and observation into a very up-to-date context. Our streets and many other places are today impossible to imagine without surveillance cameras. For the Festival of Lights the artists are searching and documenting the signals of surveillance cameras on the city’s territory.
‘PAX 2014’ / Stage, dance performance, audio and video installation / Leipzig Ballett, Mario Schröder, Leipzig
The freedom to travel was one of the core issues of the demonstrators in the autumn of 1989. The growing number of people who applied for exit visas, the flow of refugees and the respective media coverage played a major role in mobilising the protests. Against this background the Leipzig Ballet is presenting extracts from ‘PAX 2014’.
Light and words projection / Sigrid Sandmann, Hamburg
The project of Sigrid Sandmann reflects memories that fifty- to sixty-year-olds have of the year 1989. By directly involving people this way, the large-scale projection of words in light at the façade of the InterCityHotel will become an experimental reflection of thoughts. Very personal words will be projected into the public space, received by the participants of the Festival of Lights and associated with individual values, imagination and own ideas.
‘We are the people’ / Two video displays, sound room / Ulrich Polster, Leipzig
The project of Ulrich Polster focuses around the slogan ‘We are the people’, with view of the autumn of 1989 and against the background of current European events. The participants of the Festival of Lights walk through a sound room enclosed by two video displays that are related to each other in their contents. For the sound collages historical material of 1989 and contemporary recordings are being used.
‘Hope and Disappointment’ / Video and audio installation Jürgen Meier, Leipzig
The installation by Jürgen Meier hints at the important role that the churches played for the Peaceful Revolution. During the Leipzig Festival of Lights he will combine the three churches on the ring road in the performance ‘Hope and Disappointment’. Per video installation, a ‘water fall’ will flow out of each of the churches onto the ring road.
‘Emotional landscapes in the urban environment’ / Stage, music, video installation / Mike Dietrich, Susan Baumgartl, Leipzig/Berlin
In East Germany some young people would not stop looking for freedom by resorting to alternative culture, which was often closely connected with individual music trends. The officials registered this challenging, and they reacted with prohibition and censorship. For the musicians there was hardly any possibility to perform except on private or church events.
‘Banners and Signs’ / Video installation / Yvon Chabrowski, Berlin
Arriving at the Stasi headquarters, the participants of the Leipzig Festival of Lights will face several screens with pictures of demonstrators. The video work by Yvon Chabrowski unites different pictures and forms of protest: demonstrators show their claims and goals on banners and signboards.
‘Return on Investment’ / Video and text installation, live performance / Claudius Nießen, Leipzig
‘Return on Investment’ is the name Claudius Nießen gave his installation at the modern bank building, which focuses on coming to grips with the chances and possibilities that have resulted from the Peaceful Revolution. The project, however, also reflects the everyday hardships and worries of the individual.
‘I vote, I build!‘ / Video mapping / Jonathan Richer, Théoriz Studio, Lyon (France), Arthur Sotto, Studio BK, Artistic director Jean-François Zurawik, Lyon
At the façade above the main entrance of the New City Hall a contribution of Leipzig’s twin city Lyon can be seen. At the transition point from dictatorship to democracy the freedom to vote is the central achievement of the Peaceful Revolution. This freedom is likewise obligation and responsibility. The project ‘I vote, I build!‘ invite spectators to become aware of two models of society.
‘white space – critical thinking needs time and room’ / Light object / Mischa Kuball, Düsseldorf
Mischa Kuball’s installations question existing room situations, shift their borders and open them up. The internationally renowned light artist and professor for media art uses his installation to reflect upon the will of people to achieve freedom of the mind. ‘Critical thinking needs time and room’ – this motto of a banner of 1989 is symbolically transformed into light by the artist.
‘Palace of Happiness’ / Light mosaic/ Frank Hülsmeier, Max Erlemann, Leipzig/Wismar
The project, which was initiated by Hülsmeier and Erlemann is inspired by the architecture and history of the ring road building complex, whose foundation stone was laid in August 1953 in the presence of Walter Ulbricht.
‘Show your story – domestic happiness’ / Photo projection / Studio 2014 (Mike Dietrich, Jürgen Meier), Leipzig
‘Show your story’ is a project taking up individual experiences of the 1980s in East Germany and of the 1990s in the united Germany and aiming at presenting family and personal perspectives. Beside socio-political claims, the Peaceful Revolution was also inspired by individual, ‘private’ desires, hopes and expectations. These can for example be found in family photos of the time.
‘Paths of Freedom’ / Photo, audio and video projections / Edith Tar, Radjo Monk, Leipzig
‘Paths of Freedom’ is an installation in various places along the ring road highlighting pictures from the past on their location today. Photographs that were taken by Edith Tar between September 1989 and March 1990, when she participated in the Monday demonstrations, will be projected at the original venues where they were taken.
The installation will reactivate the former city radio, which had been introduced by the Soviet military administration and was then continued by the East German officials. This medium was above all used for propaganda purposes; it was, however, also the medium that served to broadcast the legendary and groundbreaking appeal of the ‘Leipzig Six’ with Kurt Masur on 9th October 2014: ‘No violence!’.