A pitcher…

A pitcher made from local soils, stacked and fired to hold what’s worth, the harvest, the vital belongings passed on. The gaping aperture of a crack —looking out from within, looking in from without renders the vessel an empty promise.

Contractually still storage, the vessel holds no longer. Its bottom plummeted, and now, without ground beneath feet, it hugs our savings to death, flummoxed by a catastrophic contract written by and for our bodies.

About The Broken Pitcher

Tracing the effects of financialisation and austerity, the collaborative project The Broken Pitcher by Natascha Sadr Haghighian, Marina Christodoulidou and Peter Eramian attends to a concrete case: A crucial meeting at a bank, negotiating the foreclosure of a family home in Larnaca, Cyprus in 2019. Foreclosures are one of the austerity measures that were imposed on the Cypriot government by the Troika (the EU Commission, the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund) after the financial crisis in 2012. Read more →

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Interview with Ana Teixeira Pinto

Ana Teixeira Pinto is a writer and cultural theorist based in Berlin. She teaches at the Academy of Fine Arts Nuremberg and the Dutch Art Institute. Her research relates to affect theory, digital media, political economy, decoloniality, and history of science.

In response to the question “What should the bank employees do?” posed in the film “The Broken Pitcher” Ana Pinto exposes solidarity and personal ethics as a thorny question. Owning a house or an insurance signifies having stakes in global finance. She explains how debt has a political function and traps citizens into a subservience creating a false sense of prosperity. She talks about the desertification of city centres, declining living conditions, and the rise of nationalist right movements.

Interview with Andrej Holm

Andrej Holm is a sociologist specializing in urban renewal, gentrification, and housing policy. He teaches at the Humboldt University and is an active supporter of the initiative “Expropriate Deutsche Wohnen & Co”. He lives and works in Berlin.

Starting out from the question “What should the bank employees do?” posed in the film “The Broken Pitcher” Andrej Holm discusses the meaning of “home”. He explicates how the universal right to housing has to measure itself against financial logic. The so-called “highest and best use”, the maximum added value through the use of buildings, transforms the houses in which we live and work into objects of speculation. Where does this come from and how can residents defend themselves against it?

Interview with Nicholas Shaxson

Nicholas Shaxson is an author, journalist and investigator. He has been active in the Tax Justice Network, an expert-led lobbying group focused on tax issues. He is the author of the awarded book “Treasure Islands” (Random House UK, 2011). Shaxson lives in Berlin.

To the question “What should the bank employees do?” posed in the film “The Broken Pitcher” Nicholas Shaxson responds by telling the story of international finance and how its rise coincides with the British Empire’s decline. From the Bretton Woods agreement in 1945 to the slow-motion financial explosion starting in the 1970s to the current system of financialisation with offshore tax havens like Ireland, the Cayman Islands, or Cyprus, Shaxson describes how finance – supposedly a utility – has become an end in itself, a predator, and a burden.

Interview with Margarita Tsomou

Margarita Tsomou is a dramaturge, curator, performance artist, professor for contemporary theater practice in Osnabrück, and curates at Berlin‘s Hebbel am Ufer. She has published on forms of resistance and protest in Greece since 2011.

Margarita Tsomou reflects on the question “What should the bank employees do?” posed in the film “The Broken Pitcher” in the context of the financial crisis in Europe in 2011-2013. Margarita talks about bailouts and aid as colonial forms of oppression and dominance. She contrasts the political space with the legal space and says: “We can only do something if we organize ourselves as neighbours.”

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