Phil Collins at HAU

Phil Collins returns to HAU with his Installation "my heart's in my hand..." A benefit evening and album release brings together a number of bands connected to the project. There will also be a screening of his latest film "Tomorrow Is Always Too Long".

my heart's in my hand, and my hand is pierced, and my hand's in the bag, and the bag is shut, and my heart is caught

18–22 March, 26–28 March, 30 March–2 April, 9–12 April, 15–18 April / 5–8pm HAU2


For the last 15 years Phil Collins has been making films, installations, and live events which engage with social reality, and mine the contradictory impulses of intimacy and desire within the public sphere. In 2013 Collins collaborated with guests of GULLIVER survival station for the homeless located under the railway arches at Cologne's central station. There he installed a phone booth with a free line that anyone could use for unlimited calls, on the agreement that the conversations would be recorded and anonymised. The selected material was posted to a group of musicians, serving as the starting point for original new songs presented as 7" vinyl records in listening booths specially designed by architect Florian Stirnemann

The project includes contributions by some of Collins's personal heroes (Scritti Politti, David Sylvian, Lætitia Sadier and Damon & Naomi), trailblazing experimental acts (Demdike Stare, Planningtorock, Maria Minerva, Pye Corner Audio, Heroin In Tahiti, Peaking Lights), local musicians across different generations (Elektronische Musik aus: Köln, Pluramon, Cologne Tape), and the original German indie-superstar Julia Hummer

Having worked for a homeless magazine in the 1990s, Collins has a long-standing interest in issues relating to these purposefully ignored and routinely overlooked communities. Bringing to the fore the expressive potential of the human voice in an age of total surveillance, he dramatises the moment of communication as an emotional and ambivalent exchange. 

Orginally commissioned for a solo exhibition at Museum Ludwig (Cologne), and supported by Akademie der Künste der Welt.

Tomorrow Is Always Too Long

15 April, 8pm / HAU1

Film screening; UK 2014, 82 minutes, with German subtitles

Collins's first feature-length film is a love letter to Glasgow, Scotland's largest city. Developed over the course of a year with various local communities, the film paints a portrait of daily life as seen through the scope of human experience. At the heart of the film is a six-song cycle by musician Cate Le Bon whose intimate pop gems are interpreted by non-professional singers. Accompanied by the Royal Scottish National Orchestra and filmed in their everyday environments, the performances play out as kaleidoscopic vignettes in a modern day city symphony.

Musical sequences are interspersed with public-access-style broadcasts filmed in a disused 1960s TV studio. They feature a cast of Glaswegians from every walk of life whom Collins met and befriended: socially engaged pensioners, burlesque animal rights activists, street poets, market traders, Elvis impersonators, club kids, and elderly star-crossed lovers. 

The third strand comprises a series of intricate short animations, created by Matthew Robins and soundtracked by Barry Burns, which follow a group of characters during a night out on the town—eating chips, loitering in the streets, disco dancing, drug taking, and engaging in nocturnal free-style sexual acrobatics at the local park.

The improbable lovechild of musicals and documentary, late-night television and silhouette animation, Tomorrow Is Always Too Long defies classification and embarks on an immersive, hypnotic trip into the heart of the city.

Commissioned by The Common Guild for Festival 2014. 
Supported by the Goethe-Institute (Glasgow) and HAU Hebbel am Ufer (Berlin).

my heart's in my hand ... – Album Release and Benefit Concert

18 April, 10pm / HAU2

With Lætitia Sadier, Demdike Stare, Heroin In Tahiti, and a DJ set by Barry Burns
Phantasm and Politics Special

Shady Lane Productions (Berlin) and Nero (Rome) are releasing a double 12" album which collects all 13  tracks produced for Phil Collins's installation presented at HAU2. Limited to 500 copies, it comes in a silkscreened gatefold sleeve, with a booklet documenting the project and its exhibitions in Cologne, New York, and Berlin. Featuring new texts by Mark Fisher and Florian Schneider, the album will be available at a special price for the launch. 

A benefit gig at HAU2 includes a stellar line-up of live performances by Lætitia Sadier, Demdike Stare, and Heroin In Tahiti, and a DJ set by Barry Burns. All proceeds from tickets and album sales on the night will go to GULLIVER survival station for the homeless.