Practice repair: tape it up!

Collective Works created a set of banners for the Arch+ exhibition project “The Great Repair” at the Akademie der Künste, Berlin. The banners, made with tape and recycled fabric, bore bold slogans such as “BEGIN WITH THE EVERYDAY”, “WORK WITH THE EXISTING”, “DECOLONIZE KNOWLEDGE WORLDS”, “TOOLS TO THE PEOPLE”, “KEEP THE SCARS VISIBLE”, “REPAIR TE PRACTICE” and “PRACTICE REPAIR”. They structured and chaptered the exhibition space, which discussed the contradictions between growth and ecology based on architecture’s material culture, and presented more than 40 positions from art, architecture, and spatial practices in which repair becomes a new design paradigm. A special tape based typeface was developed for this project.

About "The Great Repair"

The Great Repair is an oxymoron. The title captures the convergence of two seemingly contradictory principles: the revolutionary ambition for systemic change and the evolutionary act of repair. Despite the justified (postmodern) skepticism toward revolution as a concept of rupture, we must not abandon our aspiration to bring about profound transformation.

The philosopher Eva von Redecker formulates this thought along similar lines:
“We face such an enormous need for transformation that it would be downright absurd to disregard the most radical term for change that we have in our political vocabulary. The question is how to fill it with meaning. I understand revolution less as a break and more as an interstitial change, a change that creates the new through and out of the in-between spaces of the old.” At such interstices in the existing fabric—this is where repair can begin. Moreover, understanding revolution in this way, as “processes of successive replacement” of “anchor practices,” Eva von Redecker offers an approach to change that is oriented toward practice.

Duration exhibition:  Oct 2023 – Jan 2024
Read more about the concept behind “The Great Repair” 



Karin Mientjes
Peter Zuiderwijk
Commissioned by:
Anh-Linh Ngo, Editor-in-Chief ARCH+
Photos credits:
Opening & Exhibition Views © David von Becker
School of Repair © Harry Schnitger