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Ginnheim Living Room

CityLab on the move in Ginnheim
24 March - 4 July 2013

Cosy village centre, modern blocks of flats: Ginnheim is a versatile, ambivalent and multicultural district of Frankfurt: The third exhibition in the series "CityLab on the move" approached the question of how people live here - in "G-Town, in the Ginnheim Living Room". 

The initiator was the local history working group in the neighborhood center. The exhibition was shown in the clubrooms of the local gymnastics club, one of the social centers in the district. In 18 contributions, volunteer co-curators and around 200 participants showed how they see their district. The exhibition was a multifaceted, cross-generational and cross-cultural examination of what it means to live in Ginnheim. All contributions were brought around a large central table, because networking in the district was an important concern for the participants. All age groups, from kindergarten children to pensioners, took part in the process. Participatory elements were also integrated this time to give all visitors the opportunity to comment on and add to the individual contributions to the exhibition as well as to leave their own perspective.

In this way, the exhibition not only built a bridge between old and new Ginnheim, but also created a connection between exhibition makers and audience. This exhibition was above all an invitation to participate, network and think about the future.

The CityLab provided the impetus for the establishment of the „Ginnheimer Kirchplatzgärtchen“, Frankfurt's first urban gardening project. The greened church square in Alt-Ginnheim has become an important meeting place in the district.

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For more information about the district and the contributions, please unfold the text:


The district - variety of living forms

The quarter of Ginnheim lends itself to such a multi-layered view, as it is characterised by heterogeneous settlement and population structures: 15,000 people from all over the world live here, whether in the historic village centre with its half-timbered houses, traditional restaurants and family businesses, or in the settlement planned by Ernst May at Höhenblick or the Platensiedlung. In the last, built in 1955, lived the US troops stationed in Frankfurt and their families. After the withdrawal of the Allies, many new families moved in here, about 50% of them are migrants. With an above average proportion of residents of German nationality with migration experience and a foreigner percentage of about 25%, transculturation is part of everyday life in Ginnheim.

Individual contributions

The exhibition consisted of individual contributions from various co-curators and cooperation partners: The history working group dealt with individual residential buildings of particular historical interest, such as the "Roter Block" built in 1913, or with houses that - yesterday and today - combine living and working in one place.
How children and young people experience their district and deal with their surroundings was the subject of the contributions from day-care centres and youth centres. The Astrid Lindgren School carried out a project week on the "street where I live". The children from three day-care centres documented which places or non-places play a role for them in their daily experience. The wish that was expressed by the project participants for a stronger networking of the residents from the individual settlements was thus taken up and implemented. In this way, the bridge between Alt-Ginnheim and Neu-Ginnheim was built and continued in the supporting programme.
The topic of food also plays an important role in the context of "living": Cooking together and telling stories about national eating habits and recipes was the subject of exhibition contributions by the Youth Centre and Astrid Lindgren School Care. New contacts between Ginnheimers of different origins and living situations could be established and deepened.
Various groups have come together under the leadership of the Federal Association of Migrant Women based in Ginnheim, who will take part in the exhibition with their own contributions. In an artistic or documentary way, the women dealt with the subtle differences between home, homeland and apartment and reflected what role their specific living situation plays in this.
The future of Ginnheim was the subject of contributions that focused on the planned redensification of the district and on urban gardening as a form of active appropriation and design of one's own living space.

Exhibition location

TSV Ginnheim
Am Mühlgarten 2
60431 Frankfurt am Main