The Munich artist Benjamin Bergmann brought a bit of Venice flair to the Emscher area with his work Chiosco (“kiosk”), and invited visitors on a fictive long-distance journey to Italy during the Emscherkunst: he placed a traditional souvenir pavilion – recognizable from Venice – on Lake Phoenix’s (“Phoenix See”) shores. During the exhibitions opening times, an authentic souvenir seller looked after it and sold its stock: Venetian souvenirs, Italian magazines and soft drinks – the kiosk offered everything a tourist could want.
As a tourist attraction and place of longing, the kiosk plays with the moment of the absurd through is obvious misplacement and encourages visitors and residents to see their surroundings in a new light. The artificial Lake Phoenix (“Phoenix See”) offered a backdrop to the kiosk that is not unlike his Italian hometown: In recent years, the lake has become a popular recreational destination and visitor magnet. Positioning it on the so called “Kulturinsel” (“Culture Island”) at the lake near the Emscher River also reminds of a problematic both places share: Alongside the infamous Acqua Alta which haunts the streets and alleys of Venic in the winter months, the dangers of heavy rain and floods are quite present in the Emscher area.
The art work has been dismantled and put in storage.