Petra Spielhagen is a Berlin-based artist who focuses on the interwoven moments between everyday life and the staged. Her output spans three main areas:

Petra Spielhagen is occupied with images of everyday situations in public space, in the landscape and on travels. In particular, she is interested in how sets and scenes for a possible event are emerging in our increasingly staged reality.

She uses photographs and typical resources of the theater to isolate an element from a spatial or temporal context and insert it as a photograph or painted backdrop in another place.

For presentation, she adopts formats and displays of everyday contexts such as advertising. In participatory actions, passers-by are involved. They get a photo of themselves in front of a backdrop or exchange a story for a photo of a place.

Petra lives and works in Berlin, studied free art and stage design at the Kunsthochschule Berlin-Weißensee. Among other things, she exhibited at the Festival of Regions, Linz, Austria, in the NGBK, Berlin; at the DA, Kunsthaus Kloster Gravenhorst, in Minneapolis, Minnesota, in Marseille, France, at the Kunstraum Kreuzberg, Berlin. 

She has received the following prizes and grants, among others: research grant, global grant from the Berlin Senate for Rotterdam, Otte 1 künstlerhaus Eckernförde, Schöppingen Artists’ Village Foundation, Goldrausch female artists’ project, Berlin; Project grant, DA, Kunsthaus Kloster Gravenhorst; Artist Residency, Cannes, France; Hotel Neustadt, Festival, Halle-Neustadt, project funding from the Senate for Science, Research and Culture, Berlin; First prize in the art competition of the Max Planck Society/realization of the Wandering Light Field for the Fritz Haber Institute, Berlin.


Website design: Null Zero
Development: Virgile Janssen

The copyright lies with Petra Spielhagen/VG Bildkunst Bonn and the individual authors and photographers. Despite careful content control, the site owner assumes no liability for the content of external links. The operators of the linked pages are solely responsible for their content.


Berlin, 2020
Proposal for an Invited competition, awarding authority: Bezirksamt Treptow-Köpenick.

Scaffolding, plywood, slats, pigments, acrylic paint.
500x300x100 cm.

The painted backdrop shows the motif of a postcard from the Berlin Trade Exhibition of 1896 in Treptower Park. The major event was presented as a Gesamtkunstwerk and was intended to show, inform and entertain technical progress with exhibition halls, pavilions and large backdrop streets such as Spandauer Straße in Alt Berlin or the Straße von Kairo. In the special exhibitions Alt Berlin, Cairo and the Colonial Exhibition, Exoticism was presented at great expense. More than a thousand people, some of them from Africa, were employed to recreate the customs and traditions according to the ideas of the exhibition organisers or to recreate them in medieval Old Berlin.


Proposal Temporäre Kunst im Rosengarten, Treptower Park


Advertising postcard of the Berlin Gasglühlicht with significant attractions of the trade exhibition 1896


From: „Pracht-Album der Berliner Gewerbe-Ausstellung 1896, Kolonialausstellung, Alt Berlin, Kairo“