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Post/Socialist Palaces

Many Berliners and others remember the Palace of the Republic as an important building of the socialist state of the GDR. Cultural palaces also played a central role in many other socialist states: as places of encounter and education, of culture and sport.  In discussions at 12 round tables, we want to approach the palaces in Bucharest, Kyiv, Prague, Sofia and Warsaw and also address the Berlin Palace.

At the 4th and 5th Palast-Treff we ask about the function, meaning and handling of these other palaces that continue to stand there. At other tables, everything revolves around the developments in 1989 and the following years – what did the collapse of state socialism look like in Bulgaria or Romania? What were the aspirations? How did freedom of the press develop and what did the struggle for civil rights look like?

We are supported and accompanied in our table discussions by experts who bring a special knowledge of the palaces and the socio-political developments of the countries. Next is a selection of the experts present, together we come into an exchange, complement and occasionally contradict each other and learn a lot of new things!

Before and after the Palast-Treff, the video installation “Culture-Power-Commerce” can be experienced in Hall 1, and in the foyer in front of Hall 1, the virtual reality installation “Palast der Erinnerung” by the CyberRäuber awaits its guests. By 2024, a new Palace of the Republic will be created in virtual reality.


Kateryna Mishchenko (*Poltava, 1984) is a writer, curator and co-founder of Medusa, an independent Ukrainian publishing house. She taught literature at the Kyiv National Linguistic University and worked as a translator in the field of human rights. Her essays have been published in national and international anthologies and magazines, as well as in the book “Ukrainian Night”. Her books are The Book of Kyiv / Kyjiwska knyzka (2015) and Aus dem Nebel des Kriegs. The Present of Ukraine” (2023). She is currently a fellow at the Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin.

Janka Vogel (born in 1988). Studied Educational Science and Protestant Theology in Kassel, Marburg and Sibiu (Romania). Graduate studies in Southeastern European Studies with focus on Romania / Moldova at University of Jena; publications and research on the Romanian diaspora in Berlin. Currently Head of the Social and Migration Affairs Department at a mayor welfare organization in Berlin. Lecturer at FSU Jena and BTU Cottbus-Senftenberg. Member of the Southeast Europe Association, Board member of the German Romanian Society and member of the HepMig Advisory Board of the Robert Koch Institute.

Voin de Voin (born 1978) lives and works in Sofia. He completed his master’s degree at Das Arts – Institute of the Advance Research in the Performing Arts and his bachelor’s degree at Gerrit Rietveld Academy and also obtained a diploma from SNDO- School for New Dance Development, Amsterdam. Voin de Voin works in various fields of visual arts, from performance to installation, incorporating his research on collective rituals and human behavior, gender studies, ancestral knowledge, psychogeography, sociology, and parapsychology. He celebrates art as activism. His work has been shown in institutional and non-institutional spaces, art fairs, performance venues, festivals, museums, public spaces, and nature around the world. In 2023, his anti-war activities in Bulgaria confronted various civil society constructs such as marriage, prison, and media censorship. He organizes and curates SAW Sofia Art Week, which has been held annually since 2016.

Haruna Honcoop is a Czech-Japanese filmmaker, graduate of the Film and TV School of the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague (FAMU), where she is currently a PhD candidate writing about Chinese independent documentary film. Her film essay Built to Last – Relics of Communist-Era Architecture (2017) was awarded the Archfilm Lund festival prize. Her short film True or False (2016) won a prize at This Human World festival in Vienna. Olympic Halftime documentary film that deals with the architecture and urbanism of Olympic cities in Beijing, Tokyo, Paris and Athens and other fiction film made in German-French co-production Annexions will both premiered in 2023. She is currently developing a new documentary film I Am Taiwanese about the political identities of Taiwanese and Eastern Europeans.

Paul Jeute, born in 1981, studied history and art history in Dresden, Halle, Prague and Sibiu, then literary writing at the German Literature Institute in Leipzig.
During his studies, he wrote for the cultural editorial departments of the Prager Zeitung and the Allgemeine Deutsche Zeitung in Romania. His master’s thesis was published in 2013 in revised form with the title Bucharest. Myths, Destruction, Reconstruction. An Architectural History of the City. He has been awarded scholarships for his literary texts in Schöppingen, Stuttgart, Šamorín (Slovakia) and Jagniątków (Poland), among others. He currently works for the Adult Education Center Bad Segeberg and as a freelance author and cultural historian.

- Free of charge
- Talk
- Duration: 90 min
- Adults, Youth
- German, English
- Accessible for wheelchairs
- Hall 1, Ground Floor

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