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Pantea Lachin
950 Meter – La Boum, 2021
7C neon prints, decoder glasses

A cartographic analysis of the commercial history of Kastanienallee that visualizes the process of gentrification in three layers (1: new businesses; 2: old businesses; 3: old/new buildings). Through this exploration surfaces the effects of classist, incestuous-colonial* as well as racist profit-maximizing exploitations of urban living and work spaces. A glance through the specialized stereoscopic glasses reveals again what has long since disappeared or been displaced. What is today, once again, recedes behind what once was.

During the month of November, a slightly modified version of this work can be seen as an urban intervention in the form of posters throughout Kastanienallee.

*Incestuous colonialism is a term coined by Lachin to describe colonization practices of privileged ruling classes towards marginalized populations or regions in domestic territories.
Specifically, this work addresses the growing socio-economic inequality between East and West Germany, forced by processes such as gentrification since the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989.


Fashion & designer brands stores, cosmetics, luxury businesses 

Restaurant, takeaway, cafe, bar, pub, open late kiosk

Hairdresser, florist, copy shop, stationery, IT, driving school, video store, travel agency

Household goods, clothing, haberdashery, carpets and rugs, electrical shop, coal cellar

Drugstore, supermarket, bakery, fruit & vegetables, butcher, poultry, seafood, beverages

Manufacturing and workshop

Cultural sites: cinema, theater, gallery, club, music and record store, book store

Public as well as social facilities

Old stocks, outline of the plots

New buildings since 1989

Not a business

Between 1957 and 2000, Kastanienallee was home to at least 80 distinct types of small businesses. By 2021, about 30 are left and only 20 of them have been in Kastanienallee for more than 15 years, but now they account for two-thirds of the remaining demographics.
Overall, the diversity of small businesses has shrunk by 63 percent over the past 15 years.

Homogeneity is increased by the fact that 84 percent of available spaces are now occupied only by three types of businesses: Gastronomy (45 percent), fashion (30 percent) and open late kiosks (9 percent).

Compared to 2006, the number of both food service establishments and fashion stores has increased roughly eightfold and the number of open late kiosks has quadrupled. Stores for daily needs, such as supermarkets or drugstores, no longer exist at all on Kastanienallee.

Establishments completely disappeared from Kastanienallee:
Seafood store
Beverage store
Flower store
Photo studio
Art supplies
Paint & varnish store
Household goods
Porcelain store
Carpet shop
Haberdashery store
Clothing store
Variety theater
Popular theater
Open-air cinema
Music café
Travel agency
Cab drivers school
Pet shop
Electrical store
Car care
Motorcycle store
Roofing workshop
Chocolate factory
Secondary school
Men’s dormitory (residential establishment for homeless men)
Charity meal center
Shelter for asylum seekers

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Many thanks to Thomas Albrecht, Rolf Gänsrich, Conrad Menzel, Lutz Penndorf and Peter who shared their memories and time with me.