Cooperative Living in Light

Cooperative Living in Light


2 bedrooms, kitchen, bathroom in the Brandenburg Gate

How do you live in a landmark? The Brandenburg Gate opened its doors for the FESTIVAL OF LIGHTS and housed families, singles, couples and flat-shares, young and old, Berliners and newcomers for the International Year of Cooperatives – in a spectacular 3D video projection that turned the entire building into a residential building.

The Brandenburg Gate is the most famous Berlin building in the world. No other building in the city has so much symbolic power. Completed in 1791 and enhanced by the Quadriga in 1793, the Brandenburg Gate has experienced many historical moments. In 1806 Napoleon came and abducted the Quadriga to Paris. In 1918 the November Revolution raged here. And after the Wall was built in 1961, the gate was found in the restricted area between East and West for 28 years. It was not until 22 December 1989 that it was open to the public again.


A premiere that sets a sign

As part of the FESTIVAL OF LIGHTS 2012, the Berlin housing cooperatives and the festival team asked themselves how cooperative living could cause a stir. The result: an impressive 3D video projection that transformed the Brandenburg Gate into a lively residential building.

The staging was the first 3D video mapping of the FESTIVAL OF LIGHTS, it opened a new dimension to light art and won the Red Dot Design Award. Since that premiere, the festival has presented a spectacular 3D video show every year at Berlin’s most famous landmark, which is growing artistically from year to year. And we promise you, there’s even more to come.


Landmark for living

Cooperative living has a future, the message of the production was well received and was a success for the cooperatives that is still talked about today. Across Germany there are around 2.2 million apartments that belong to housing cooperatives – that is ten percent of the total rental housing stock in Germany. The cooperatives thus enable more than five million people to live affordable, secure and good – far away from the profit interests of the real estate industry. Housing cooperatives have been around for over 100 years. They prove to this day that economic efficiency and social action are successfully compatible.


Picture 1: Thorsten Frisch  |  Picture 2: Christian Kruppa |  Picture 3: Christian Kruppa |  Picture 4: Isabel Schenker  |  Picture 5: Harald Heyer