Open Space B – Berlin Images

Citizens with Equal Rights

An exhibition by the Documentation and Cultural Center of German Sinti and Roma // 27 November 2021 to March 2023

Sophie Perl | 24. November 2021

Schwarz-weiße Portraits auf blauem Grund

“Citizens with Equal Rights” is an exhibition by the Documentation and Cultural Centre of German Sinti and Roma on an Open Space in the room “Berlin Images”of BERLIN GLOBAL.

It explores the history of Berlin’s Sinti and Roma since the Weimar Republic, both in a European context and through personal biographies. A central focus is the Sinti and Roma civil rights movement: for recognition of the Holocaust, against antiziganism, and for a self-evident normality as citizens with equal rights. Beyond a historical perspective, the exhibition features twelve contemporary portraits from the “RomaRising” photo series by Chad Evans Wyatt, as well as the Grimme Prize–winning RomArchive.

Sinti and Roma in Germany and Berlin

Sinti and Roma have lived in Germany for over 600 years and were recognised as regular citizens in Berlin and elsewhere until the 1930s. Under the 1935 Nuremberg Race Laws, the Nazi regime subjected Sinti and Roma to the same discriminatory and exclusionary provisions as the Jewish population. A few years later, Sinti and Roma were deported to concentration and extermination camps. In occupied Europe, about 500,000 people fell victim to the Holocaust against the Sinti and Roma.

Nevertheless, survivors and their descendants had to fight for decades for recognition of the Holocaust against the minority. It was not until 2012 that the civil rights movement achieved an important step towards public visibility with the inauguration of the central memorial in Berlin to the Sinti and Roma of Europe murdered under National Socialism. But structural and societal prejudices and antiziganism still persist. Rejecting this ongoing everyday discrimination, the Open Space exhibition demands recognition of Sinti and Roma as “Citizens with Equal Rights” – as a matter of course.

Hängende Papierbögen mit dem Titel "Sinti und Roma: Wer sind wir?"
The exhibition by the Documentation and Cultural Centre of German Sinti and Roma is also about the question of one's own identity.
Hängende Papierbögen mit dem Titel "Sinti und Roma: Wer sind wir?"
© Stadtmuseum Berlin | Foto: Michael Setzpfandt
Blick in die Ausstellung, rechts ist ein Foto eines blauen Kleides zu sehen
The exhibition explores the history of Berlin’s Sinti and Roma since the Weimar Republic.
Blick in die Ausstellung, rechts ist ein Foto eines blauen Kleides zu sehen
© Stadtmuseum Berlin | Foto: Michael Setzpfandt
Besucher*innen schauen sich ein Video an
A central focus is the Sinti and Roma civil rights movement: for recognition of the Holocaust, against antiziganism, and for a self-evident normality as citizens with equal rights.
Besucher*innen schauen sich ein Video an
© Stadtmuseum Berlin | Foto: Michael Setzpfandt
Freifläche_B_Raumsicht
Right in the first themed room of BERLIN GLOBAL you will find Open Space B.
Freifläche_B_Raumsicht
© Stadtmuseum Berlin | Foto: Michael Setzpfandt

The Documentation and Cultural Centre of German Sinti and Roma

The Documentation and Cultural Centre of German Sinti and Roma, founded in 1997, emerged from decades of civil rights work. It advocates for the equal participation of the minority. At the same time, it acts as a specialised academic institution for researching and documenting the history of the Sinti and Roma, for political education work and for contemporary art and cultural projects. The Open Space is curated by André Raatzsch and Jan Kreutz.

Programme

  • 26 November 2021 – Digital opening
  • 9 April 2022 – Celebrate International Roma Day! Civil rights, art and visibility
  • 16 November 2022 – Otto Rosenberg “A Gypsy in Auschwitz” – Reading and discussion with Petra Rosenberg
Die Freifläche im Raum Berlin-Bilder
Die Freifläche im Raum Berlin-Bilder
© Kulturprojekte Berlin und Stiftung Stadtmuseum Berlin, Foto: Oana Popa-Costea
The Open Space in the room "Berlin Images"

The Open Spaces

The Open Spaces are three areas of the BERLIN GLOBAL exhibition developed by initiatives, organisations and independent groups. The objective is to increase the visibility of unknown, underrepresented and activist perspectives and issues. The projects are selected by an independent jury, then realised over a period of 9 months in cooperation with the Stadtmuseum Berlin. Afterwards, the exhibitions are shown for one year as part of BERLIN GLOBAL.

“Citizens with Equal Rights” is the second Open Space project in BERLIN GLOBAL. The first was created by clients of the organisation Lebenshilfe Berlin. This exhibition, “Un certain regard”, is on view in the room “Interconnection” until 21 November 2022.

Open Spaces

The Open Spaces are three bright blue areas within the BERLIN GLOBAL exhibition developed by initiatives, organisations and independent groups. The objective is to increase the visibility of unknown, underrepresented and activist perspectives and issues.