Philipp Lachenmann: DELPHI Rationale


Schering Stiftung Art Award 2016

Don’t Shrink Me to the Size of a Bullet is the title of the exhibition by artist Hiwa K  - winner of the Schering Stiftung Art Award 2016 - at the KW Institute for Contemporary Art in Berlin. For the exhibition, the artist presents a selection of works from the past ten years as well as an ambitious new production, co-produced by the Ernst Schering Foundation, with support of the Medienboard Berlin-Brandenburg.

The exhibition is accompanied by an extensive publication, which presents the entirety of the artist’s oeuvre to date. The publication, Don’t Shrink Me to the Size of a Bullet, is edited by Anthony Downey and is published by Verlag der Buchhandlung Walther König.

The paradox of belonging and estrangement has been a crucial aspect within the life and work of Hiwa K. By concealing his last name, he underlines his detachment and ongoing engagement with issues around refuge. The letter “K”, in this process, comes to the foreground and operates as a figure without agency — a figure that is not able to identify with either an “I” nor a “we”.

The disconnection with what was formally known as “home” is crucial to the artistic inquiry undertaken by Hiwa K. This question drives the artist to produce work in which vernacular forms, oral histories, and political constructs are intertwined. The various references in his practice consist of stories told by family members and friends, found situations, and everyday encounters that evolve around make-shift solutions and pragmatic approaches to often complex ideas and concepts. In this capacity, the artist attempts to retain the traditions surrounding his upbringing while also obtaining the knowledge that will help him to further integrate into newer environments.

The longing for connection, curiosity, and the desire to learn remain key to the artist’s exploration of the relationship between personal and the collective systems of thought. When arriving in Europe in 2001, he took the opportunity to study music and became a pupil of the Flamenco master Paco Peña. Acting as a tool to create another dimension of critique within today’s society, his relationship to music has since become a key element in the work. Music has also functioned as a bridge to create a strong collective and participatory dimension within his practice and working models.

Hiwa K: Don’t Shrink Me to the Size of a Bullet
Schering Stiftung Art Award – Prize Winner Exhibition

Opening: June 1, 2017, 7–10 pm
Exhibition dates: June 2 – August 13, 2017

KW Institute for Contemporary Art
Auguststr. 69 | 10117 Berlin

The Schering Stiftung Art Award is awarded by the Schering Stiftung in cooperation with KW Institute for Contemporary Art in Berlin since 2009 and is endowed with prize money of 10,000 Euro, a solo exhibition, the production of a new artwork, and a catalogue.

The jury of this award consisted of Mariana Castillo Deball (artist), Natasha Ginwala (Curator, Contour Biennale 8, and Curatorial Advisor, documenta 14), Krist Gruijthuijsen (Director, KW Institute for Contemporary Art), Charlotte Klonk (Professor of Art History and Visual Cultures, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, and member of the Ernst Schering Foundation Council), Bonaventure Soh Bejeng Ndikung (Director, SAVVY Contemporary, Berlin), Jacob Proctor (Curator, Neubauer Collegium for Culture and Society, University of Chicago), and Wael Shawky (artist and recipient of the 2011 Schering Stiftung Art Award).

The exhibition Hiwa K: Don’t Shrink Me to the Size of a Bullet. Schering Stiftung Art Award is a collaboration between the Schering Stiftung and KW Institute for Contemporary Art.

The cultural programming of KW Institute for Contemporary Art is made possible with support from the Senatsverwaltung für Kultur und Europa.



Hiwa K, Photo | ©: Fabian Schubert
HIWA K: This Lemon Tastes of Apple, 2011, Video, 16:9, color, sound, 13:26 min, Video Still, © Hiwa K, Courtesy of Hiwa K and KOW, Berlin, and Prometeo Gallery, Milan

Hiwa K honored with Schering Stiftung Art Award 2016


Hiwa K: This Lemon Tastes of Apple, Video Still