Utopie mit Hammer und Nagel

Furniture making workshop in the spirit of Enzo Mari

Everyone should know how to self-produce life’s basic amenities, like a bed, table, chair or cupboard, without requiring much money or special skills. Enzo Mari, the Italian design pioneer, dedicated himself to this ideal with his 1974 book “Autoprogettazione”, which contains 17 low-cost, practical DIY furniture designs. A few planks of wood, a hammer, some nails and a bit of curiosity are all that is needed to leave our everyday culture of “throwaway” consumerism behind.
No-nonsense and democratic, Mari’s designs are just as timeless now as when they were created over 40 years ago. With thousands of people venturing to Germany to start a new life, concerns regarding how and where they will live are becoming more and more frequent. We also re-evaluate our own societal habits, ultimately throwing up the question: what are our true basic needs?
“I want to create models for a different society.”
Enzo Mari
This year the Wiesbaden Biennale – the State Theatre’s festival for European theatre and avant-garde performance – is wholly dedicated to the pressing political issues and realities of European life. What really constitutes European identity and who belongs to it? What are its social rituals and ideals? The festival centre, which will be built on the beautiful Warmer Damm Park next to the theatre, will be an inviting place where artists and guests can meet, eat together, converse and celebrate. Over the coming months and with the help of volunteers, we aim to build our own furniture for the festival centre and the “Grand Hotel” conversion, in the spirit of Enzo Mari. Once a month on a Saturday, we will meet in the State Theatre’s workshops to create chairs, tables, benches and beds – all under professional supervision, of course!  All tools will be provided and previous experience is not required.
All furniture built within the scope of the workshops may be engraved with their builder's signature and taken away or donated after the festival.

Advance registration is recommended (moebelbau@wiesbaden-biennale.eu, 0611 58296257), but spontaneous participants are also most welcome. The “Asyl des müden Europäers” is located at 47 Wilhemstraße.