Benjamin Bergmann: The Revolution Will Not Be Televised


24. October 2018 – 10. February 2019
Sprengel Museum HannoverSprengel Museum Hannover
During the HANNAH ARENDT TAGE (HANNAH ARENDT DAYS), devoted this year to the subject of protest, the Sprengel Museum Hannover is staging a solo exhibition by the artist Benjamin Bergmann. The exhibition’s title “The Revolution Will Not Be Televised” refers to a legendary song by the Afro-American musician and poet Gil Scott-Heron dating back to the early Seventies. The lyrics of this song with their critique of capitalism focus on society’s TV-driven materialism and consumerism and can also be interpreted as an appeal for freedom, change and political resistance.

The exhibition’s centrepiece is a light installation consisting of five stage floodlights cast in individual concrete foundations. In a forceful light dramaturgy communicated in Morse code, the statement “The Revolution Will Not Be Televised” is repeatedly flashed onto the wall and in this way insistently presented as a recurring message. Opposite stands “Der Traum von einer großen Sache” (“The Dream of Something Big”) – a large-format tableau of golden mirrors, consisting of façade panels from the former Palace of the Republic in East Berlin, symbolising the failure of the German Democratic political system. The symbolically charged space thus generates a dialogue that draws on the history of both repression and revolt and hence on the issue of today’s forms of protest and resistance.

Also planned is a publication documenting the installation of the exhibition, describing the various works and objects and, in conversation with the artist, highlighting thematic interrelations and the artist’s position.

The exhibition is a cooperation between the Sprengel Museum Hannover and the HANNAH ARENDT TAGE.


This exhibition is being sponsored by the VHV STIFTUNG.


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