Berlin Biennale 2018

Forum and Festival of Contemporary Art

Berlin three months of art - from June 9 to September 9, 2018, the Biennale presents modern art at the highest level.

The 10th edition of the event on contemporary art attracts many new artists and is more international than ever. The motto this year? The clear announcement "We don't need another hero".

Artists - portfolio - no heroes

A total of 46 artists and collectives have responded to Gabi Ngcobo's call to the Spree.

This year, the Johannesburg professor was the first African to take on the role of chief curator in order to enter into an artistic dialogue with Berlin. Thus it is in the tradition of the Biennale: to take a critical look at current issues, to discover new things, to think anew.

This is also suggested by the motto for 2018, which is based on the number 1 hit of the same name by rockstar Tina Turner from 1985. No need for further heroes - this calls for forming one's own opinion, especially with regard to common hierarchies and existing structures of power. "Heroes eventually turn into tyrants," Gabi Ngcobo knows, "so better off with them."

However, the Berlin Biennale 2018 does not want to make any fixed attributions. Rather, the often postcolonial and globalization-critical works of art tells stories, shows different versions of truth and are intended to stimulate questions and exchange.

The central theme are topics such as colonial oppression or the imbalance of power between black and white, but also flight, expulsion, the position of women - topics that affect the conflicts of our time.

The paintings, films, installations and sculptures by many new artists from all over the world are spread over five exhibition venues in Berlin-Mitte.

KW Institute for Contemporary Art

The birthplace of the Biennale is only a stone's throw away from the Hotel Augustinenhof. The Kunst-Werke (KW) Institute for Contemporary Art initiated the event in 1998.

For the 10-year-old, the exhibition therefore also shows portraits of people who decisively shaped the internationally renowned gallery.

The heart of the exhibition space is the large hall - and the South African artist Dineo Seshee Bopape fills it with her installation "Untitled (Of Occult Instability)[Feelings]". The room, immersed in red light and full of ruins, leaves behind an end-time feeling. You decide whether the oversized cardboard ball on the ceiling is more of a disco accessory or a demolition ball. On the other floor of KW you will discover artistic positions on suppression and liberation, such as Okwui Okpokwasilis performance. It is an impressive demonstration of Nigerian women's protest against the colonial authorities. How? As a visitor you should become active yourself and reflect your experiences in dance and singing.

KW Institute for Contemporary Art
August route 69
10117 Berlin
2 minutes walk across Auguststraße

Folk Stage Pavilion

In "normal" life, the bookstore and ticket office, the small Volksbühne Pavillon at Rosa-Luxemburg-Platz will be a big hit at the 2018 art festival. During this time, the glass building housed an installation by the Latin American artists' sisters Las Nietas de Nonó. Her fainting installation "Ilustraciones de la Mecánica (Illustrations of the Mechanical, 2016-18)" creates a very oppressive atmosphere.

This piece of art is accompanied by regular performances by the artists, in which they thematize the exploitation of black women in their US-governed homeland.


10178 Berlin

10 minutes by bus 142 or tram M8

Academy of modern arts

If you want to attend the Academy of the Arts as a Biennale visitor, you won't get past Sanssouci in 2018.

The Dominican artist Firelei Báez has erected a rudimentary papier-mâché construct outside the gates of the academy. It is a replica of a replica that was made in Haiti at the beginning of the 19th century.

Through him, Báez tells the parallel story of the famous Hohenzollern castle, his imitation in Haiti and the Haitian revolutionary leader called Sans-Souci.

The video film "Again" by the German artist Mario Pfeifer will be shown inside the academy. On two screens set up at an angle to each other, he lets a racially motivated act of violence against an Iraqi refugee take place in his home state of Saxony. In the film, two moderators raise questions about civil courage and one's own behaviour; viewers take on the role of a jury.


academy of arts
Hanseatic way 10
10557 Berlin

15-20 minutes by S-Bahn from Oranienburger Straße or Hackescher Markt

ZK/U - Centre for Art and Urbanism

Ten international artists are guests at the art collective in Moabit. Zuleikha Chaudhari, Johanna Unzueta or the Egyptian Heba Y. Amin will use their stay at the Centre for Art and Urbanism to take written history apart, to expose it and to tell it under the motto "I'm not who you think I'm not".

In her video work, for example, the latter designs "Alantropa", a new African-European supercontinent. An idea that also reverses existing power relations with geographical conditions. The Haitian Tessa Mars works up the history of her country with her alter ego "Tessalines", a female version of the Haitian folk hero Dessalines.

Enjoy also the view of (urban) art from the wild gardens of the collective!


Siemens road 27
10551 Berlin

25 minutes with U6 and U9 from Oranienburger Tor

HAU Hebbel at shore

Here you can listen to art - in fact Kwaito. This South African style of music is especially popular with the black young generation. Typical are chants and slow chords with which the musicians want to express their post-apartheid lifestyle.

At the Biennale, recitative concerts on 15 and 16 June 2018 at HAU2 on Halleschen Ufer commemorate the student unrest in Soweto 42 years ago.


Hallesches Ufer 32
10963 Berlin, Germany

20 minutes with the U6 from Oranienburger Tor

To the Biennale at the Hotel Augustinenhof

The Hotel Augustinenhof is located in the heart of the Berlin art scene - and the Biennale. Please contact us for your visit to the capital!

Opening hours of the exhibition venues:

June 9 to September 9 2018
Wednesday to Monday: 11-19 h
Thursday: 11-21 h


Admission to all venues: 16€
Reduced: 10€

If you are interested in guided tours of the Biennale, you can join one of the moderated tours on Saturdays or Sundays.

For questions or booking by phone:

Phone +4930 308860

Hotel Augustinenhof