Transport a Smell of Revolution

Christian Schnurer

5 Aug — 20 Sep 13

Maximilianstrasse and Türkenstrasse

Photograph of a brown burnt-out car wreck without tyres parked on Maximilianstraße in Munich in front of the Chanel shop.

Transport a Smell of Revolution, 2013 © Foto: Christian Schnurer I Tamar Maya Sharabi

With his work “Transport a Smell of Revolution”, Christian Schnurer places a symbol of the revolution right in the center of Munich, disrupting the bubble of prosperity.

In January 2011, Tunisian youth showed that even the most stable political systems can collapse overnight. Since then, squares around the world have been occupied, tent cities erected and street battles fought. Public space is being taken over and politicised. The burning car has become a symbol of upheaval.

Munich seems to be one of the last islands of bliss, where political boredom reigns while the outraged of the world dismantle the established order. Christian Schnurer finds a burnt-out car wreck in Sidi Bouzid, Tunisia, and abruptly places it in the urban space of Munich. The wreck undergoes a transformation during its transport from Tunisia to Munich. The ‘souvenir’ of the revolution seems out of place on the promenades of the ‘beautiful village of a million’, confronting the public with a reality beyond the headlines and far removed from commerce and consumption.

The private car of young policeman Ridha is set on fire by an angry crowd outside the police station in January 2011 after the fall of Ben Ali. Ridha talks about his loss, his responsibility as a representative of the state and the inevitability of violence in revolutionary upheaval. The transport of his wrecked car through public space and his dealings with the authorities are documented by sound and film. In conversation, the artist directs his acquaintances towards the question of the meaning of revolutions, heroism and the destruction of the status quo.

A project by
Christian Schnurer

Research and documentation
Tamar Maya Sharabi

Christian Schnurer, born in 1971 in Schwandorf, lives and works in Munich.


Maximilianstrasse and Türkenstrasse

Maximilianstrasse 20
80539 Munich

Türkenstrasse 18
80333 Munich