International Sculpture

A protective wall of approx­i­mately 1,500 sandbags in front of the Kunsthalle, realised in 1993 on the occasion of the exhi­bition “Kunst im Welt­maßstab” (Art on a World Scale) at Kunsthalle zu Kiel, Germany, as a Thomas Bauer project (Thorsten Goldberg and Wieland Bauder).

A protective wall of approx­i­mately 1,500 sandbags was built up in 2 m-high sections on either side of the steps leading up to Kunsthalle zu Kiel and supple­mented with an LED display board in the entrance area that bore the latest inter­na­tional news. Sandbags are used for cover in military oper­a­tions or for protection against flooding. Sandbags piled up imply impending danger, a possible emer­gency situ­ation against which it is necessary to be protected by some form of wall. They arouse a feeling of uncer­tainty. To enter the gallery, it is necessary to pass through this rather threat­ening entrance, made narrower by the sandbags. The gallery has not been affected by the trap­pings of war since the Second World War. The sandbags are not a sign of imminent danger. The walls at this home of art address a different system of refer­ences. Inter­na­tional sculpture places the sandbags in a global context via the LED board above the till area in the gallery being supplied with the latest inter­na­tional news (reports from the news­paper Kieler Nachrichten). At the same time, the work tackles ques­tions such as the extent to which daily reports of crisis situ­a­tions have a threat­ening effect on our lives, how we should deal with the presence of news from around the world and the extent to which protection against the rampant flow of infor­mation is necessary. A memorial is erected to warzones and natural disasters of the world in which sandbags are used.