Tension, Failure, Errantry – 10 Years of the ICI Berlin

ICI BerlinRecently, the ICI Berlin Institute for Cultural Inquiry celebrated its 10th anniversary. We spoke to the director, Christoph Holzhey, and the staff researcher, Arnd Wedemeyer.

Interview by Dennis Schep

Dennis: During the first seven years of its existence the ICI worked on Tension / Spannung. Could you tell me something about the background of this first core project?

Christoph: The project was initiated by myself and a group of nine associate members who took part in setting up the institute. The idea was to think about the tensions between different cultures in the broadest sense possible. We wanted to see how productive tensions can be developed, what the potentials and limits are. Looking at the coexistence of cultures, we wanted to question the paradigm of harmony or integration, and investigate whether we can look at cultures from the perspective of their internal tensions.