The Tea Ceremony
Completed at: Tempelhof Berlin, Germany
With: Joe Basset and Jack Bardwell
Drinking tea in the water basin of Templehof, in Berlin. A ritual that normally takes place inside people’s own houses, but made public in a space of a very complex nature. It is an experiment, more than a project, part of the research process we went through, that brought us to think about the nature of rituals.
The water basin of Templehof is made of a concrete platform that collects rainwater coming from the Tempelhof airport fields. It collects unclear and polluted water. The pollution comes mainly from cars’ oil but many others are the factores that pollut that water. The result of we, as humans, produce in our urban settlments is there clearly visible. Nevertheless, that place has much more to say.
The ritual of the tea made us nonetheless feel peaceful. We were able to make the best out of the environment, even though it was not meant to be a welcoming one. We could appreciate sounds from birds and water, breeze, colours and the quietness. This made us draw the conclusion that rituals are powerful also in their bringing something familiar and stable in an unstable environment, providing a sense of recognition that makes the human nature comfortable.