»Stimmen in der Stadt« is a two-week long audio project which will take off on the occasion of World AIDS Day 2010 in the city of Berlin. In central locations around the city, visually distinguishable listening stations will be installed in which interviews containing private stories of HIV and AIDS patients will become accessible to the public. The sound material originated from interviews recorded between 2006 and 2009 with men and women living in Berlin and who are affected by the virus.
The notion of equating AIDS with a daunting death sentence, widespread in the eighties and nineties, has faded in the 21st century into accustomed indifference. AIDS patients are no longer a theme in the media. They live longer and die more quietly. »Stimmen in der Stadt« seeks to break the silence.
In some 15 locations across the city of Berlin, passers-by will notice the audible voices. They can then make the choice of stopping and listening to the individual stories. The interviews by each individual will be played in a five to ten minute loop. Rectilinear speakers will be directed at specific points and fill them with sound. These points will be made clearly visible through lighting and a distinctive logo.
Stimmen in der stadt was initiated by christoph Weber and Martin Kostezer. Since several years, Chrsitoph Weber has been a supervising doctor at the trips for aids patients organized by the Berliner Aidshilfe. He first started interviewing patients during these trips for documentation purposes, as requested by the charity’s sponsors. However, the unusually intimate insight to life with the virus that these documents provide inspired the idea of making the interviews accessible to the public.
The project, operated by the NPO AVK Sozialprojekte is made possible by the kind support of the Berliner Aidshilfe, the Deutschen Aidsstiftung and the Stiftung Deutsche Klassenlotterie. Former Federal Minister for Helath, Ulla Schmidt, is the Honorary Patron of Stimmen in der Stadt.
The opening ceremony and press conference will take place on Wednesday, November 24 at the Axel-Hotel, Berlin.