A Sense of Self

Who am I and what makes me? This question of identity has persisted for centuries throughout the history of mankind.
Previously issuing from an essential core identity, it is now more than ever that the ego is thought, told and performed. Who we are and how we perceive our environment takes place in these interactions. Frequently media such as photography, video and the internet play important roles.

“A Sense of Self” illustrates – via 10 video works – the continuous process of ongoing renovations and narrations of self. Self and alien are illuminated when the protagonists search for and invent in front of the camera, and/or interact with other people. Many artists work at the core of a repertoire of socially possible self-stories. We meet the romantic, the adventurer as well as the urban flâneur. In these times of self-presentation individual identity strategies have become and can be read as part of social norms.


Wer bin ich und was macht mich aus? Diese Frage nach der Identität zieht sich seit Jahrhunderten durch die Menschheitsgeschichte.

Während man lange Zeit von einem essentiellen Identitätskern ausging, gilt heute mehr denn je, dass das eigene Ich erdacht, erzählt und performt wird. Wer wir sind und wie uns unsere Umwelt wahrnimmt findet in der Interaktion statt. Nicht selten spielen Medien wie Fotografie, Video und Internet dabei eine wesentliche Rolle.

A Sense of Self zeigt anhand 10 künstlerischer Videos den kontinuierlichen Prozess des beständigen Um- und Neuerzählens des Selbst. Dabei wird ebenso das Eigene als auch das Fremde beleuchtet, wenn die Protagonisten sich vor der Kamera oder in Interaktion mit anderen Menschen suchen und erfinden. Viele arbeiten sich am Repertoire an gesellschaftlich möglichen Selbst-Geschichten ab. Wir treffen auf den Romantiker, den Abenteurer ebenso wie auf den urbanen Flaneur. An den Selbst-Narrationen lassen sich individuelle Identitätsstrategien genauso wie gesellschaftliche Normen in einer Zeit der Selbstinszenierung ablesen.

Participating Artists:
Eli Cortinas, José Drummond, Jonathan Goldman, kate hers RHEE, Sanja Hurem, Richard Jochum, Ahmed Mohsen Mansour, Christine Schulz, Jana Schulz, Suzan Tunca

Curator: Christine Nippe (DE)

Christine Nippe is of German and Swiss decent (1976). She lives and works in Berlin.

Nippe is a curator and writer who has published widely on contemporary art, urbanism, transnationalism and networks. She studied Art and Cultural History, Aesthetics and European Ethnology at Humboldt University in Berlin, and recently finalized her PhD dissertation at Humboldt University Berlin entitled “Art and Cities. Artists in Berlin and New York: On the Symbolic Capital of Cities.”

In this context she was as a Visiting Scholar at the Department of Art History and Archaeology at Columbia University in New York and has interviewed artists such as Nevin Aladag, Matthew Barney, Dan Graham, Anri Sala, and Rirkrit Tiravanija. Nippe was the curatorial research assistant at the 5th berlin biennial of contemporary art, programme coordinator for the exhibition of Candice Breitz at Temporäre Kunsthalle Berlin, guest curator and head of education at Kölnischer Kunstverein, editor at Haus der Kulturen der Welt, and director of Kunsthalle Koidl Berlin.