This spring Noordkaap presents “NKTAXI COLOGNE 2019” a non-linear, manipulated and subversive report. It is the result of a collaboration with the talented young graphic designer Samuel Pin from Paris (graduate at the Design Department Gerrit Rietveld Academie Amsterdam), Katja Diallo (artistic director Noordkaap) and Inari Wishiki (artist based in Rotterdam).
NOORDKAAP TAXI/ COLOGNE
… a taxi that doesn’t necessarily takes you where you want to go. A runaway ride along the parameters of the here and now.
This is Cologne, spring 2019. Each Friday morning the road traffic in the city centre is shut down, in order to let a growing number of young protesters pass through. Students and scholars are skipping their classes and resolutely demand a cleaner environment, a brighter future. Not only in German cities, but worlwide. They fight for car free cities and an emission free society: “Wir sind hier, wir sind laut, weil ihr unsere Zukunft klaut”. At the same time the election campaign for the European Parliament is in full swing filling public space with election posters. The main access roads to downtown Cologne are a perfect setting for the AfD (extreme right-wing populist party) poster campaign. While stuck on the A57, with the silhouette of the Dom cathedral looming in your front window, their slogans sharpen the political atmosphere; “Finger Weg von unserem Diesel” and “Geht’s noch Brussel? Diesel retten!”. The AfD is interfering with the madness, stearing up the fear. Angry citizens appear to be terrified of a growing number of Diesel bans in German cities, of loosing jobs and autonomy. Wearing yellow vests to match French protesters whose movement began as a reaction to proposed fuel hikes, they hit the streets shouting “Diesel drivers resist”.
Noordkaap Taxi took place in the streets of Cologne. Togheter with the artists JODI (NL), Max Dovey (UK), Abner Preis (NL) and Inari Wishiki (NL) Noordkaap called upon a post-futuristic farewell from the analogue car. With a series of custom made taxirides throughout the city, the artists created work on the cutting edge of digital culturale and performance, where their critical look at the automobile and the digitalisation of private space from different artistic perspectives, resulted in intimate happenings.
Noordkaap Taxi was part of the project Memory Stations, initiated by the Akademie der Künste der Welt (Academy of the Arts of the World) that reached out to the citizens of Cologne and NRW region to become public historians. Noordkaap focused on the car, as an object that we can all relate to, and created a link between the local context, unconventional means of public outreach and the Memory Station project.