The Fifth Wall | Opening

With The Fifth Wall, Mareike Bernien and Merle Kröger present a pioneering project of artistic research and an examination of a unique TV archive. The Fifth Wall gathers films, reportages, moderations, texts, letters and photos by the filmmaker and editor Navina Sundaram from over 40 years of her work in television. Sourced from ARD archives and Sundaram’s private archive, The Fifth Wall is a curated look at German migration and media history. Navina Sundaram (1945–2022) is thus the prime focus as an author who takes a journalistic stand: on internationalism and decolonisation, the question of class, racism, immigration, on Indian and German politics.

In the Betonhalle, The Fifth Wall is transferred into the exhibition space. Along five thematic islands, Bernien and Kröger open up a viewing and discussion platform that poses questions about migration, gender relations and post-colonial structures, among other things, and relates them to current debates about documentary film, journalistic ethics and the medium of television. The exhibition will be accompanied by an extensive event programme.

The Fifth Wall already exists as a digital archive. It is at once a non-linear biography, television archive and research platform, offering a wealth of additional information on the project context.

Opening: A welcome by silent green and the curators will be followed by a performative reading by the violinist Kathy Nierenz and visual artist Bärbel Rothhaar. Urmila Goel will then talk about persons named after Navina and interviewed for the digital archive.


programme booklet for the exhibition



Thursday–Sunday, July 4–14
Opening: Thursday, July 4, Doors: 6.30 pm, Start: 7 pm
Opening Hours: Mo–Fri, 2–8 pm / Sat–Sun, 11 am–8 pm
Admission free