The project for Willy-Brandt-Platz by Karin Sander and landscape architects Lützow 7 responds in many respects to the demand for a monumental space. By keeping the space free and not furnishing it with sculpture or other interventions they seem at first glance to respond directly to the State´s interest in representation by means of “emptiness” that is, if we follow Henri Lefèbvre, in places which it can control and “fill”. And indeed this will most probably happen. Already, in response to politicians’ whishes, a central fountain had to be conceded. For although political bodies may theoretically esteem empty space, which they can divide up, mark, structure and occupy, they also fear an emptiness that they cannot in some way or other instrumentalise. The fountain wished for is therefore a reflex, a symptom of a suspected horror vacui on the part of the future users. The artist and the landscape architects reacted to the wish and suggested a fountain that will also be a space. This is, to put it simply, a hole at the centre of the square – which is also its highest point – out of which water flows. The entire square is laid out like a flattened cone, that is to say with the barely perceptible slope. The water streaming from the fountain will spread as a thin film across the surface and, depending on the time of the year, will evaporate in the heat or will freeze in the cold to form a layer of ice.
Text: Philip Ursprung (Translation: Roderick O´Donovan)