Fair Play

Fair Play
Carmen Arias' exhibition "A Lecture on Prominent Forms" presented as part of the programme Fair Play in July2023. Photo credits: Alex Jeskulke
Fair Play is a series of five site-specific art exhibitions happening at the former ticket office at the Olympic Park in Munich.

Carmen Arias
Munich, Germany
Team members
Carmen Arias
Field of work
Architecture, Urban planning, Visual Art, Research
Project category
Public space
Project submitted

I was born in 1999 Santander, Spain and I would describe myself as an emerging artist who works through sculpture, performance, text and graphic elements.In 2021 I finished my studies of Fine Arts at the Complutense University of Madrid of Madrid with an extraordinary prize. Since 2019 I have been enrolled at the sculpture class of Hermann Pitz at the Akademie der bildenden Künste in Munich. Starting from next October the class will be directed by the Palestinian artist Jumanna Mana. I have been part of different exhibition settings in Madrid as in Munich. This year I was selected to be part of the annual programme of Art in the public space of the Ministry of culture of Munich.
The urban landscape is the central subject of my artistic research and often also the scenario where my work takes place.
My interest on urbanism comes from questioning the formal and symbolic limits of the "accessible" (public) space of the city, as well as by analyzing the influence that architecture exerts on the inhabitants and the actions it harbours.I usually enrol in long-term projects that start with deep research based on specific scenarios and situations. Even though, I tend to materialize such topics through different media, text still plays an important role in my praxis. Over the last year I have presented two short lectures with a pseudoscientific tone, that relate directly to formal aspects of the urban landscape. On one of them a created the term of the "Prominent Form", which should be any artificial vertical structure that ascends in the landscape without necessity or naivety, and that represents man's victory against gravity.
Currently I am working on the analysis of the city as a vertical landscape, divided by layers. As well as how each one of them is connotated differently, creating a political and social hierarchy in our society. This has led me to work with the "supraterranean" layer of the city (the roofscape) as well as with the invisible subterranean.

The project Fair Play sets five individual artists to deal with one of the former ticket offices at the Olympic Park in Munich (Summer Games 72).
The park presents a quite singular futuristic character on its architectural ensemble. As a political attempt of West Germany to clean its image among the world, they presented themselves as green, open and democratic. The buildings were built with the connotation of being real utopias of democracy, progress and peace. The park was built on mountains of rubble coming from the ruins of World War II and didn't have any fences or opening times.
Compared to other Olympic parks, this one has remained in an astonishingly good state, tho only because of its commercialisation. A commercialisation that has led to some pieces of the ensemble to disappear, and others, to lose their original purpose, remaining as ruin, only protected through the mark of monument conservation.
The building of the ticket office didn't find any further use once the games were over and has remained until now in a timeless state. An alienated body, inhabiting the park. The project Fair-Play aims to temporarily reactivate the building through different fictive interpretations. Such practices should point out the existence of the building and raise questions among the citizens.

The five artists intervening the space will be working site specific and with sound as one of their main mediums. They will dive into the history of the park and analyse the present state of the ticket office through several topics. Among them: the distinction of architectural monument, the decision of keeping or dismantling structures built for an specific event (olympics). An open format at the end of the programm, will allow a discussion between the architect, the artists, professor of the TUM for recent heritage culture, and anyone willing to participate.

Fair Play has been funded by Munich's Ministry of Culture and will take place between July and November of 2023.