“Opferschicht” (literally “victim layer”) is the German word for a sacrificial layer on a surface – for example, the adhesive film on the windows of Berlin's subways that protects the glass from people who scratch words and names onto it. To get rid of the etchings, this layer gets sacrificed. Who built the city, who inhabits it, who wears it out?
The whole city is full of such vestiges. Touch a surface in this city and feel the scratches of entire generations. These are the scars and the letters of the urban body, which are often perceived as visual noise or pollution.
Inspired by the “Jazzstylecorner” movement and Berlin's graffiti scene, choreographer Kadir Amigo Memiş has been working at the intersection of writing and dance since 2005. In the dance performance “Opferschicht”, he examines the urban cultural practice of “Scratchiti” – etching statements onto city surfaces – and combines it with special “popping” techniques. In doing so, he searches for choreographic representations that visualise the aspirations of writing, as well as its physical processes, in which human and non-human bodies intertwine.
Originally conceived by the Kadir Memiş Company as a stage play, “Opferschicht” has been redeveloped as a film due to Corona restrictions, which will premiere at HAU4 on 2 July 2021.