Toppled from the Horizontal Axis, June 2022

in collaboration with Bauteilboerse Bremen

Fragment of a handrail structure as part of an emergency exit, 4 security glasses, and 20 pieces of outdoor sandstone tiles all belonging to the former LZB (state central bank) building in Bremen.

(the items have been borrowed temporarily from the Bauteilbörse in Bremen), synthetic woods, a second copy of the poster from the building’s entrance in July 2020, Projection of the film on the museum wall. 

Taking the shape of a video installation in the Gerhard Marcks House, ‘Toppled from the Horizontal Axis’ is a proposition that draws from the vertical axes (2 spiral handrail structures) of the former Federal Bank Building (LZB) a.k.a. “Monetary Bulwark” located in kohlhökerstraße 29. It mobilizes toppling as speculation of the vertical axes, retrieving fractions from the former construct in collaboration with many actors, among which is Bauteilbörse Bremen as a local partner, weaving together a series of conversations that tackle the binary of glorification (embedded in the museological context of preservation) or denial (inscribed in the instituting of the new without dealing with its past formation). The work unsettles this dichotomy, reusing the fractions as imperatives that could inform and co-constitute an alternative scenario.

‘Toppled from the Horizontal Axis’ is the second iteration of a project presented as part of a group exhibition, something to declare, nothing to declare in April 2022. Previously, it took place at a former supermarket space in the Gröpelingen area of Bremen. 

Aria Farajnezhad, Toppled from the Horizontal Axis, still image from the film, (11 min 53 sec) 
Toppled from the Horizontal Axis, installation view, Gerhard Marcks Haus, Bremen, Germany. photo by: Ana Rodriguez
Aria Farajnezhad, Toppled from the Horizontal Axis, still image from the film, (17 min 33 sec) 
Toppled from the Horizontal Axis, installation view, Gerhard Marcks Haus, Bremen, Germany. photo by: Ana Rodriguez
A series of photographs taken between July 2020 and May 2022, capturing the transformation of the poster at the entrance and consequently the transition of the building and its surroundings.

3d work:

Farzad Golghasemi

sound editing:

Bruno Barrenha

Thanks to:

Natascha Sadr Haghighian, Karin Strohmeier, Andree Korpys, Markus Löffler, David Thorpe, ZwischenZeitZentrale, Arie Hartog, Rudolf Hickel, Susanne Kopp-Jäger, Dorsa Eidizadeh, Hanna Stijnen, Raffie Davtian, Will Lee, Nadim Choufi, Neda Saeedi, Anastasiia Guzenkova, Torge Meyer, Vicc Repasi, Gunther Brouwer, Martin Taschies, Karl Robert Strecker, Atefeh Miryeganeh, Michel Chiwemo, Ralf Harders, Tim Reinecke, Zainab, Haidary, Elard Lukaczik, Arash Qilich, Noelle BuAbbud, Gabriela Valdespino, Bubu Mosiashvili, Elizaveta Kovalenko, Patrick Peljhan, Jiye Lee, Maria Arzt, Victor Artiga Rodriguez, Farzad Golghasemi, Bruno Barrenha.

April 2022

standing folded paper with marker drawings, excerpts from an assessment report on the possibility of “reuse” on Bremen’s former federal bank building, and cut metal beams.

the residue of the poster attached on the entrance door from the Bremen’s former federal Bank building, purchased book “Das Haus Am Wall” written by Walter Förster, pictures; showing the transformation of the poster through time, an Image of the future construct released by Evoreal enterprise. A metal replica of the handrail structure, stereo Audio recording.

There is something emancipatory about pulling down a symbol of power that
outweighs demolishing it or turning it into rubble. To subvert the symbol, one needs to appropriate and use the same vocabulary, meaning symbolism. In the Imagery that involves toppling, the
The symbolic figure stays more or less solid, in one piece, yet the entire corpse flips, and the head is falling, promising that the regime which uses this imagery to legitimize and prolong itself is falling too. contrastingly mutilated figure losses its potency to go beyond the framework of the refute and fails to propose and speculate further an “otherwise” by acknowledging the past and its criminal formation.
That is indeed ahistorical to only demolish a construct and ignore its significance and meaning, if the construct itself is emblematic of a greater cause or maybe a paradigm shift the act of diminishing covers up the scene and pretends it never existed. It is necessary if not sufficient to put these remnants in alternative settings that do not contain and restrain the construct nor remove and replace it with new to deny its past. But maybe their new setting could be informed by the former but still
proposes the unimaginable.

Toppled from the Horizontal Axis, installation view, a former supermarket space in the Gröpelingen area of Bremen, Germany. photo by: Jiye Lee
Toppled from the Horizontal Axis, installation view, a former supermarket space in the Gröpelingen area of Bremen, Germany. photo by: Jiye Lee

In der Lage, November 2020

was a wallpaper piece drafted from a report which originally has been put together in December 2019 by an Architect’s office. The report extensively advocates for the demolishing of the former federal bank building located in Kohlhökerstraße and discounts one by one the possibility of reusing the building. The work includes the wallpaper plus an A5 map which invites the audience to do a four-minute walk from MMS offspace, where the exhibition is to visit the former federal bank building.

the wallpaper in the gallery has been put up on the wall with the same size, material, and technique as the poster which is found on the entrance door of the federal bank building, yet the images above demonstrate how multiple attempts towards putting down the poster from different entities during the past eight months have clearly failed to neatly erase the poster without leaving any trace behind.

as one can see in the picture below moistening the paper can help to remove it delicately without any harm to the wall or the paper.

the building is currently witnessing an early stage of demolishing despite long-lasting protests against it. 

In der Lage, installation view, MMS offspace, Bremen, Germany. photo by: Rahel Pasztor

July 2020

The poster is showing an outline of the drawing which I have taken from the book called Osteographia (1733) that has been mainly produced as an anatomy atlas with the help of a camera obscura to raise the precision of the drawing and fulfill the surgical desire to scan the bone structure.

I was particularly interested in a gigantic representation of the bone structure of a child portrayed in a monster proportion in comparison to the landscape, tending to magnify and celebrate the triumph and birth of modernist Man over nature. (There is a small sentence in red saying exit the loop). the poster was an anonymous intervention and provocation to a project (LZB) that historically came to existence as a solution to animate economic stillness in 1983 Bremen harbor and yet gets demolished (2021/2022) so a private sector could turn it into a lucrative asset.

I realized later that the composition is referential to paintings depicting the transfiguration of Jesus, trying to establish the sky and its vertical relationship as the standard Theological spacial geometry.

At bottom of the poster, you see excerpts from a scene in the movie, La Notte (1961) by the Italian director, showing a crowd gathered to gaze upon the spectacle of a small rocket, shot to the sky. The new composition though is replacing the rocket with the gigantic Human bone structure, as if these two imageries are following the same trajectory, assigning the vertical axis to the central figure, and suggesting to behold in a cylindrical shape, wondering around the monumental building.

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