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Essen-Katernberg: PACT Werkstadt takes a deep look

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Essen-Katernberg: PACT Werkstadt takes a deep look

Essen-Katernberg Why a look into the shop window shows what Essen-Katernberg has to offer. And what PACT Zollverein has to do with the campaign.

With the project “Katernberg, let yourself be seen”, the PACT Werkstadt in Essen-Katernberg wants to give local actors from the district a platform for two months: projects, life stories, attitudes, problems and concerns from the surrounding area should be presented in the form of a Showcase exhibition can be made visible. In other words: On the window panes of the Werkstadt, themes from the district, artistically processed, meet the local urban society. Students from the artistic field are now being sought to provide support.

PACT Zollverein: More contact with the population in Essen-Katernberg

“The Werkstadt arose from the need to establish more contact with the neighborhood,” explains project manager Laura Hermeling. PACT Zollverein, short for “Performing Arts Choreographic Center NRW Tanzlandschaft Ruhr”, is based on the grounds of the UNESCO World Heritage Zollverein and sees itself as an initiator, motor and stage for developments in the areas of dance, performance, theater and visual arts. Hermeling: “About seven years ago we asked ourselves: What can we as a cultural institution contribute to a district?”

Kimberly Thies (bottom left) designed the Werkstadt window together with children from the “Swap Education for Living” association.

Photo: PACT Werkstadt

When the space in a former pharmacy on Viktoriastrasse/corner of Schonnebeckhöfe became available, they took advantage and essentially opened a branch in the middle of the district. A young team organizes all kinds of meeting formats here, from readings, concerts and film evenings to offers for children and workshops on bicycle repair, cooking, linocut printing or songwriting. “The Art and Social Working Group meets here to organize projects, city festivals and various activities together,” continued Hermeling. “And we always have an open children’s workshop on Fridays. The children can come there for two hours. We have a teacher on site who speaks different languages ​​and who always has a program for the children.”

Commitment in Essen-Katernberg: From beekeepers to flower shops

What is particularly important is that you respond to the needs of the district when working, adds Mina Mahmoudian. She is a project manager in the area of ​​urban relations. “We look at what concerns and topics there are in the district, but also what commitment, what problems, challenges and skills, and how can we make them visible?” This gave rise to the “Katernberg, let yourself be seen” project back in November last year “, which is currently providing a colorfully decorated shop window in the workshop. Drawings by children can be seen there, especially hearts but also pictures that show the two people responsible.

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In December, Monika Iletschko, florist and owner of the flower shop “Blütenzauber”, designed the Werkstadt window.

Photo: PACT Werkstadt

In November, the Essen-Katernberg and surrounding area beekeeping association was the first cooperation partner to be able to present itself in the shop window. With lasting success: honey from local beekeepers is now available to buy in the Werkstadt. This first edition of “Katernberg, let yourself be seen” lasted two months until it was the turn of Monika Iletschko, florist and owner of the flower shop “Blütenzauber”. She designed the window herself using goods from her shop. “With the exhibition, Katernberg unfortunately said goodbye to this flower shop,” regrets Mahmoudian. The economic effects of the corona pandemic had affected the small company so much that it could no longer be operated economically. Iletschko had to close after 16 years – the shop on Katernberger Straße remains empty to this day.

Currently in the shop window in Essen-Katernberg: “Swap education for living”

This month, the non-profit organization “Swap Education for Living” is introducing itself in the shop window. The association is committed to promoting learning in a loving and playful way, thereby opening up alternative options to the classic education system. “In principle, our Exchange Bar at I. Terwestenweg 9 is like a neighborhood living room,” explains Stephan Köppen. The association was provided rent-free living space by the housing company Vonovia. “This is real sponsorship,” says Köppen. “Vonovia aims to do district work.” Young people from the Federal Voluntary Service live in the rooms provided for a period of one year, and in return they give tutoring to children and young people from the district. “We also have students who work on a voluntary basis and travel around the district. In this way, we mix classes that are close to education and those that are not educated here in the district.”

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The PACT workshop is located at Viktoriastraße 5 in Essen-Katernberg. The complete program can be found online at www.pact-werkstadt.de.

A reading with authors Esra Canpalat and Jehona Kicaj will take place on Thursday, February 29th at 7 p.m. You are reading from the book “And so you stayed forever”, which deals with the so-called guest workers. Admission free, register via WhatsApp on 0171 9766389 or by email: [email protected].

The exchangeable The association “Swap Education for Living” is located at I. Terwestenweg 9 in Essen-Katernberg. Contact: 0178 5769883, email: [email protected]

There is another project that they are particularly proud of: in cooperation with the Bonnekamp Foundation, the “Swap Education for Living” association has access to a natural paradise on the edge of Katernberg. The Bonnekamphöhe is a three-hectare natural garden in which many fruit and vegetable crops are grown according to permaculture principles. “We were given about a third of this area by the foundation in order to do nature, environmental and wilderness education in the broadest sense,” said Köppen. “This way we can get the children out into nature again. There is no such thing in any big city, only in Essen. Presenting these projects and our work in general here in this small window of the Werkstadt is a great opportunity for us.”

Collaboration with students at the Folkwang University in Essen

The creators of the Werkstadt also have another goal for future exhibitions: they want to involve creative students from the Folkwang University in their projects. “Of course it would be nice to cooperate with the university,” says Hermeling. “At the moment we have a call for applications through which students can contact us.” The aim is for the students, together with the children, to artistically implement the respective theme of “Katernberg, let yourself be seen” and thus design the window exhibition.

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This is still a long way off, but there are already some interested parties. The current window of the PACT-Werkstadt was designed by the children who are taught in the exchange bar by “Swap Education for Living” and who take part in the association’s projects. They designed the exhibition together with federal volunteer Kimberly Tieß. The drawings can be seen until mid-March, and the next exhibition is scheduled to open on March 14th. Those responsible do not yet want to reveal which Katernberg actor will present themselves. Hermeling: “You can see that when you pass here. Let yourself be surprised.”

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