EXHIBITION, CONCERT, READING, STREET ACTIVITY, PARTY, PERFORMANCE, THEATRE PIECE, LECTURE, SCREENING, ETC.
JOB, WORKSHOP, INTERNSHIP, COLLABORATION PROJECTS, JOINING A BAND, RESIDENCY, WANTED PROFESSIONAL, ETC.
ARTWORK, PIECE OF MUSIC, VIDEO, PIECE OF POETRY, ILLUSTRATION, SERIES OF PHOTOGRAPHS, CORPORATE DESIGN, ETC.
International open single-phase idea contest
Urban furniture in Communal-Collective-Cooperation (CCC)
Grammar of public space: urban furniture
Awarding authority: KUNSTrePUBLIK e.V. / Center for Art and Urbanistics
Siemensstr. 27, 10551 Berlin, Germany www.zku-berlin.org
Idea and background
For the last 30 years, street furniture and outdoor advertising have defined the grammar of
our cities. In Public-Private-Partnerships (PPP), cities award long-term licenses for
advertising in public space in relation to the partly necessary urban furniture and their
maintenance (bus stops, public bathrooms, benches, trash bins, signposts, etc.). The
business model is dominated by the few large, globally oriented companies with profits
running into billions. For instance, for years Berlin has been “supplied” by the Wall AG - part
of the international JCDecaux group as the number one outdoor advertiser worldwide since
2009 (with a turnover in 2014 of 2,8 billion euros in more than 60 countries with 11.900
Refined design, as the perfectly marketable scenery for customers, is an international
standard here. Whether in Rome, Istanbul, St. Louis or Berlin, the feel is identical, without
local identity, geared at lifestyle and current design trends.
The project ‘Hacking Urban Furniture’ aims to investigate this line of business that
determines the public space of our cities, and programme it anew through artistic
experiments. The project sees itself as the starting point of a long-term examination with the
objective to not just raise awareness on the side of urban planning and politics but also
realize actual changes in future tenders and interdependencies.
Reclaim your urban living space
The growing desire of citizens to be engaged more strongly in the formation of their public
spaces and infrastructures manifests in various ways: the wish for the remunicipalisation of
public services has, through public petitions, already become reality in Berlin (water in 2011,
electricity in 2013) and other cities. On the level of neighbourhoods, citizens have by now
acquired a broader, tolerated responsibility (tree sponsorships, benches at trees, parking
day, etc.). Since 1989, the citizens of Porto Alegre decide on fundamental parts of budgetary
resources, according to the notion of ‘Orçamento participativo’ (Participatory Budgeting). The
idea of so-called ‘citizen budgets’ has also made its way to several German districts and
towns (in the district of Berlin-Lichtenberg since 2006).
What economic and creative participation models for urban furniture could look like, is to be
considered within the context of Hacking Urban Furniture’s artistic practices, idea contest
and public programme.
● Can artists/activists/designers develop street furniture (concepts), which create new
functional relationships and fundamentally expand the existing business model to
benefit the common good?
● Can public advertising and street furniture from non-profit organizations make
public space more sustainable (than that from profit-oriented companies), by
directing the profits from advertising back into urban and social infrastructure?
● Which social functions and possibilities for participation and expression are thinkable
for sections of the wider public with regard to the expansion of the existing business
model? How can the urban public’s obviously wide demand for more individual
expression and local assumption of responsibility be met in a way that benefits
● Can public-private partnerships (PPP) become communal-collective cooperations
(CCC)? Which societal benefits could arise out of this shift (i.e. “city yield”)? Could
new social groups arise, which have a new feeling of responsibility?
● Which functional expansions of street furniture make sense? Which social design
tools are available to achieve these ends? And which new models of solidarity are
possible on a local level between various user groups?
● How can street furniture’s design be individual and local, adapted to its specific
location both aesthetically and functionally, without limiting its efficiency too much?
● How are societal changes reflected in the production of street furniture? What’s
different today? Can dynamic and broad-based participation through individualized
production be made possible with today’s technology (i.e. with 3D printers, open
source technology, etc.) ?
Hacking Urban Furniture aims to be an internationally pioneering project: Artists, architects,
researchers and urban creators work closely together with an expert advisory board in
interdisciplinary exchange, to analyse the parameters of urban furniture and outdoor
advertising and programme them anew. There is a special focus on the economic aspects of
urban furniture. How can issues such as creation, production, safety and maintenance be
questioned in open participatory formats, local production workshops, and corresponding
identification and care by citizens, and make public advertising obsolete? If outdoor
advertising cannot be waived altogether, its incomes should lead to a sensible grammar of
urban furniture, with added value for society and innovative, contemporary formations for our
built environment. Berlin appears to be destined for such a pilot project, with its
heterogeneous structure and its urban community that is becoming more and more active in
terms of participation and appropriation.
In the competition of metropoles, Berlin’s urban space becomes the stage of a global
discourse, which describes a new practice for our urban environment through new artistic
concepts, from experiments to prototypes that act as a worldwide model.
The international open single-phase idea contest ‘Hacking Urban Furniture - Urban Furniture
in Communal-Collective-Cooperation’ is looking for new forms, meanings and concepts of
urban furniture. The focus here is on substantial conceptions of new economic models,
functional expansions and civil-societal participation. Mere questions of design are not at the
core of this contest; rather, it is about the collaboration of society, public function and formal
1.01 Awarding authority:
Center for Art and Urbanistics - ZK/U
1.02 Subject of the contest
Subject of the contest are ideas for new forms, meanings and concepts of urban furniture.
1.03 Type of procedure
The awarding takes place as an international open single-phase idea contest for
professional artists, architects, creators, researchers or others who are interested, who
concern themselves with the topic professionally. Artists’ groups, interdisciplinary collectives
or other initiatives are especially encouraged to participate. The language of the contest is
German and English.
The outcomes will be awarded and published, and future realization of individual works and
ideas will be pursued in accordance with the financial resources that are available.
1.04 Principles and guidelines
The procedure takes place according to the guidelines for planning contests RPW 2013.
Through participation or cooperation in the contest, each participant, juror, expert, reviewer
and guest declares his/her agreement with the conditions.
Proclamations of whichever kind about content and outcome before or during the term of the
contest, as well as the publication of its results can only be released with full agreement of
the awarding authority.
Each participant, juror, expert, reviewer and guest agrees, through his/her
participation/cooperation in the contest, that personal data in connection to the contest are
automatically filed with the awarding authority.
If desired, the dates can be deleted after completion of the procedure.
In accordance with § 6 of the revised Federal Data Protection Act, the approval of all parties
involved is necessary, as there is no specific legal basis for the management of these data.
1.05 Participation requirements
Eligible are professional artists, architects, creators, researchers or others who are
interested, who concern themselves with the topic professionally. Artists’ groups,
interdisciplinary collectives or other initiatives are especially encouraged to participate.
1.06 Jury and preview
The jury is assembled as follows:
Expert jury (entitled to vote):
- Prof. Folke Köbberling (artist)
- Gilly Karjevsky (artist)
- NN, visual artist
- Jan Bovelet (architecture theorist)
Client & Local jury (entitled to vote):
- Awarding authority: KUNSTrePUBLIK e.V. (Harry Sachs, Matthias Einhoff, Philip Horst - 1 vote)
- Local authority: NN., Senate Administration for Urban Development, Berlin
- Urban research: Joanne Pouzenc
Coordination / Preview:
1.07 Edition of the contest
The call for contest participants will be published on 30/03/2017.
1.08 Introductory colloquium
On Friday 07/04/2017 from 5 until 8 pm, an introductory colloquium takes place at ZK/U
(Center for Art and Urbanistics, Siemensstrasse 27, 10551 Berlin), in the context of the
symposium ‘Hacking Urban Furniture’. This provides an introduction into the themes and
allows the participants to ask questions. The symposium and its outcomes will be
announced on the website of the awarding authority timely. Participation in the symposium is
voluntary and not obligatory for participation in the contest.
1.09 Submission of material
The material must be submitted to the awarding authority until the 30th of June 2017 via
e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org) and for submissions from Germany additionally via post (in
which case the date of the post stamp is valid).
Submissions from outside of Germany can also take place only via e-mail, including a PDF
in printing quality (A2, max. 10MB), which will be printed by the awarding authority.
1.10 Required material
1- Each participant can only submit one design (concept).
2- Design on a DinA-2 sheet in portrait: presentation in free form based in texts, drawings,
sketches, collages, plans, montages, etc.
3- Digital material: images as JPG- or PDF-file.
4- Digital material: conceptual explanation and other accompanying statements in text of
max. 3.000 (excl. spaces, as word-file).
5- Declaration of authorship (form).
6- All additional digital material can be sent to email@example.com.
1.11 Labeling of material
All designs (analogue and digital) are labelled in the top right corner with the name of the
maker (size: 3 cm high, 5 cm wide). All digital material have the name of the maker in the
file-name, with the last name first, followed by the first name.
1.12 Assessment procedure
The assessment criteria follow out of the assignment and objectives as described by the
awarding authority. The specific criteria follow out of the submitted works and their
comparison. Legal process is excluded.
1.13 Awarding and publication
€5000 prize money have been made available. At least three prices will be awarded. The
height and number of prices will be determined by the jury.
Publication of the works will take place in the internet and in the exhibition at ZK/U, as well
as through potential future publications. Realization of individual works and ideas will be
pursued in accordance with the financial resources that are available.
1.14 Property and copyright
The submitted material can be taken back by the maker after the end of the contest and the
exhibition. Copyright and the right for publication of the designs stay with the maker after the
end of the contest.
The awarding authority is entitled to exhibit (without compensation), document and publish
(also over third parties) the submitted works after the end of the contest. The names of the
makers will then be indicated.
1.15 Declaration of authorship
With their signature on the declaration of authorship (form), the participants in the contest
ensure their intellectual property and authorship of the submitted work.
1.16 Announcement of the outcomes / Exhibition of the works
The participants in the contest will be informed about the course and outcome of the contest
via e-mail. The result protocol will be made available to the participants after the end of the
contest via e-mail.
Only in cases of verifiable liability will the awarding authority claim responsibility for damage
1.18 Summary of dates and deadlines
Publication of call for participants: 30/03/2017
Introductory colloquium: 07/04/2017 5-8pm (in the context of a symposium)
Submission of contest material: until 30/06/2017
Jury meeting: middle of July 2017
Awarding: September 2017
Exhibition of all designs at ZK/U: March 2018
Deadline: Saturday 2 January 2021 at 23:00h
Type: offering / offering
Deadline: Sunday 28 July 2019 at 12:00h