22 November 2009

Tales Told by Burnt Bins


Damage fetishism ∕ Earth Junk

Photo: Andreas Trogisch

There’s so much Berlin crammed into this scene. For those not well aquainted with the city, let’s go through the picture point for point, and then not draw any conclusions.

1) The burnt bin: a recurring motif in the city. The bin is a great target for the hobby arsonist. They produce tonnes of thick black smoke, and a whole neighborhood can stink like hell for days afterwards. Recently though, Porsche Cayennes and VW Tiguans have become the objet du jour for a new breed of semi-professional arsonist, who reason that torching cars is a legitimate political act which will help bring back low rents to gentrified neighborhoods.
2) If the bin is pushed against the wall of a freshly rennovated building before ignition, it’s possible to melt away the polystyrene foam cladding and leave a crust of plaster dangling in front of a narrow cavity. Old brickwork is exposed, and a temporary canvas for street artists is revealed.
3) The daubed number 6 and the yellow smiley are the work of graffiti artist ! 6-_-.4rtist.com#-_-. Rumor has it, that ! 6-_-.4rtist.com#-_- is a friendly 46 year old with a robust collection of 500 vandalism charges.