What The Fuck Is Heimat?

Circle Culture Berlin presents, “What The Fuck Is Heimat” a show displaying a wide range of works by Stefan Strumbel which challenge conventional notions of German identity. Strumbel, a former graffiti rebel turned master of German kitsch, presents a thought-provoking collection that transcends traditional boundaries.

Born in Offenburg in 1979, Strumbel’s roots in the graffiti scene are evident in his rebellious spirit. While he once adorned city walls with spray paint, his current artistic endeavors take the form of brightly colored cuckoo clock sculptures that have gained international acclaim.

The exhibition invites viewers to ponder the concept of Heimat—home—in all its complexity. Through a series of captivating installations, Strumbel challenges viewers to reconsider their understanding of self and belonging. Vibrant cuckoo clock sculptures, intricately carved and painted, beckon visitors to explore the intersection of tradition and modernity. A wooden chest transformed to resemble Meissen porcelain offers a playful juxtaposition of materials and motifs, prompting reflection on the fluid nature of identity.

Central to Strumbel’s artistic philosophy is the notion of Heimat—a term so deeply ingrained in German culture yet resistant to easy translation. For Strumbel, Heimat serves as a metaphor for existential questions of identity and heritage, inviting viewers to contemplate their own sense of belonging within a rapidly changing world. Through his bold reinterpretation of familiar objects, Strumbel challenges viewers to confront the complexities of self-definition in an age of constant flux.

Strumbel’s unique aesthetic, blending elements of street art and pop culture, offers a fresh perspective on traditional symbols and motifs. From anchors to crucifixes, his work challenges viewers to question the meaning behind the objects we often take for granted, inviting us to explore the myriad ways in which we construct our own sense of home.