work > Entitlement

Invited to participate in a group show at the Haus am Lützowplatz, Berlin, a bourgeois manor converted into a gallery, Schwebel decided to offer his place in the exhibition for rent, exhibiting the record of transaction and contract alongside the selected subtenant's artwork.

The subtenant was selected by way of a call for submissions, and their agreement to pay the rental fee of €1,200 in exchange for which they were included in the exhibition.

This piece was intended as a commentary on the rapid increase in rental prices in Berlin, in part due to the cannibalistic practice of tenants using platforms like airbnb to subsidize their living expenses by renting out their own living spaces. The ecosystem of art also operates in a parasitical fashion, inviting artists without covering expenses. These practices are particularly virulent in cities like Berlin, where competition subtends so much of what it means to be a professional artist, and external sources of income and wealth give some an invisible advantage. The financial agreements underpinning exhibitions are not disclosed, and the 'quality' of the work in an exhibit exists independent of whether an artist has paid to exhibit, is working for free, or is the recipient of a fee.