The Activist Exhibition: Museen zwischen Widerstand und Vereinnahmung (Museums Between Resistance and Appropriation)

A panel discussion with Newroz Duman (Initiative 19 February Hanau), Mouctar Bah (Initiative in Memory of Oury Jalloh), Natalie Bayer (Director FHXB Museum) and Tahir Della (ISD), moderated by Pegah Byroum-Wand (Museums and Society - Mapping the Social), April 19, 6:00 to 8:00 p.m., FHXB Friedrichshain-Kreuzberg Museum, Berlin.

Like all institutions, museums are embedded in society's unequal power relations. On the one hand, many museums are hierarchical places where marginalized perspectives are underrepresented or excluded. On the other, there is a highly topical debate about how museums can be more socially relevant, build networks with civil society initiatives, and focus on their critical positions.

The panel discussion will take a look at this tension. The starting point is the exhibition "Three Doors - Forensic Architecture/Forensis, Initiative 19. Februar Hanau, Initiative in Gedenken an Oury Jalloh" ("Three Doors - Forensic Architecture/Forensis, Initiative 19 February Hanau, Initiative in memory of Oury Jalloh") (2022), which was jointly developed and already shown in Frankfurt, Berlin and Hanau. Using the example of the racist attack on February 19, 2020 in Hanau and Oury Jalloh, who burned to death in Dessau police custody on January 7, 2005, the exhibition highlights racist violence and structures in Germany, exposes failures of the state and calls for consequences. The exhibition focuses on the experiences and the struggle for clarification of relatives, survivors and supporters. Nine people were killed in the attack in Hanau: Gökhan Gültekin, Sedat Gürbüz, Said Nesar Hashemi, Mercedes Kierpacz, Hamza Kurtović, Vili-Viorel Păun, Fatih Saraçoğlu, Ferhat Unvar and Kaloyan Velkov. Oury Jalloh, on the other hand, burned to death in a police cell, bound hand and foot. While police and authorities cling to the narrative of Oury Jalloh's self-immolation, privately commissioned, independent fire experts refute this version and assume that the fire was caused by someone else.

The participants in the discussion have profound knowledge and many years of experience in anti-racist engagement and/or museum work. Some have lost family members to racist violence. Together we will discuss the following questions, among others:

What can activist exhibitions achieve? Can museums exhibit the critique of state structures and political demands of marginalized people without appropriating them? What challenges arise in the collaboration between museums and (anti-racist) activists? Are there differences between activist and museum memory, archive, or exhibition practices?

The panel discussion will take place at the FHXB Friedrichshain-Kreuzberg Museum, a museum that focuses on social movements and memory work in diverse Berlin. We look forward to discussing this with you!


Aktueller Stand im Untersuchungsausschuss Hanau

Aktueller Stand im Fall Oury Jalloh/Europäischer Gerichtshof