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    Lab #3 Berlin – Digital Calligraffiti: creative work from refugees on Berlin walls

    By Future DiverCities 5 years ago
    Home  /  Portfolio Item  /  Lab #3 Berlin – Digital Calligraffiti: creative work from refugees on Berlin walls

    After a successful Digital Calligraffiti workshop in October 2016 during the Retune Festival, Public Art Lab held the ‘Digital Calligraffiti – Urban Media Art Campaign’, in the framework of transmediale / CTM Vorspiel. Digital Calligraffi has its origins on a community project, that wishes to transform the urban screens into communication platforms for citizens with migration background.

    Digital Calligraffiti – Urban Media Art Campaign from Public Art Lab on Vimeo.
    With the belief that small actions can do big, this project embarks a group of ten young refugees  in a creative process with ten artists opening up new avenues of communication empowering new ideas, new thinking and new approaches.

    Thirty art works have been produced by the collective that are displayed on twelve urban screens all over the city of Berlin, giving an extraordinary visibility to the work and for the refugees a sense of belonging in the city of Berlin.

    What happened

    Through a serie of participatory events, Public Art Lab, Future DiverCities partner in Berlin created a space to invite young refugees to express themselves. More specifically, the project invite its participants to share their hopes and wishes with artists in order to produce calligraffiti artworks with their messages. Between urban art and new media art the Digital Calligraffiti project is also unique thanks to its tool: the Infl3ctor. The Infl3ctor technology enables a live visualization of all those ideas and emotions. It is an interactive table designed by the artist and engineer Michael Ang and the calligraffiti artist Hamza Abu Ayyash – to project the calligraffiti messages onto urban screens or windows.

    The calligraffiti tags produced in the camp were used also as a design for clothing and accessories. With the calligraffiti tags on t-shirts, jackets and more, this makes each wearer a message bearer for the project and their clothing become a piece of art telling its own story, spreading the word. The Digital Calligraffiti Camp was also an occasion to gain synergy between artists, curators, Future DiverCities partners and urban media and calligraffiti experts through a round table discussion about the central topic ‘Creativity in the Urban Context’. If the Digital Calligraffiti Camp is valuable thanks its big amount of artworks produced, its first richness come from an incredible experience in terms of creativity and humanity.

    An exchange with international Calligraffiti artists

    Together with the valuable help of Don Karl aka Stone/From Here To Fame Publishing, the Future DiverCities Lab #3 gathered calligraffiti artists and new media artists from different countries and origins in one space: Hamza Abu Ayyash (Palestine), Friendly (China), Drury Brennan (United States), The Wa (France), Michael Ang (Canada), José Délano (Chile), Xuli a.k.a Jana Federov (Germany), Pain a.k.a Pain Styler (Germany). This artist’s panel facilitated the process, to hear and receive the messages expressed by young refugees and to convert this into Digital Calligraffiti.

    Networked performance between Berlin and Marseille

    The Infl3ctor was also used in Berlin and Marseille for the Chroniques Festival- Acte 3 Révélation, creating art between buildings in both cities at the same time through an online network, as part of the Future DiverCities Launch Event on 29 January 2017.

    When artwork replaces advertisements underground

    Working together with the artists, the young refugees learned how to draw calligraffiti and animate their 2D artwork. This was then used as part of an artistic campaign on the series of digital advertising screens in the Berlin subway, with the theme ‘Urban screens are our canvas!’. The campaign is running until 05.03.2016 thanks to the Wall GmBH participation.

    With thanks

    The Digital Calligraffiti Camp took place in January 2017. Thanks to From Here To Fame Publishing’s full support and the warm welcome of the interdisciplinary cultural center Collegium Hungaricum.

    Lovely messages and quotes from What’s App conversation