Checkpoint Chara Berlin, is a small pop-up shop installation that occured for only 24-hours during Berlin Fashion Week 2023 and was located next to the Alexanderplatz at Haus der Materialisierung. It is a semi-continuation of characharaboys "The Tourist Shop", in which illustrated characters play out modern issues and stories of cities through printed stereotypical tourist products. This time reprinting used shopping bags and Berlin T-shirts.
By mixing the red and yellow used on the eastern front with McDonalds iconography, and juxtaposing it against the red, blue, and white of the western front and KFC, characharaboy plays with the idea of modern consumerism, dark tourism and the silent economic wars that rule our current age. Using two representative characters to battle it out, as well as learn to understand one another.
The project came into being after seeing the current infrastructure around the famous Checkpoint Charlie landmark and being intrigued at how different it looks now in comparison to the iconic pictures from the 80s. Looking through photos of the last 5 years, it became increasingly clear that there were actually still two major factions battling it out on each side of the famous street. KFC and MCDonalds.
The Tourist: The character that was previously the local in "The Tourist Shop" has gone on holiday and became a blissful tourist on an all consuming rampage. Symbolising: Capital, the West, innovation, fast economy, global, egoism, ignorance and greed.
The Local: Struggling with the fast pace of a rapidly changing city and aware of its history and tradition, it has problems coping with foreign influences. Symbolising: Social, the East, community, slow economy, local, altruism, respect and stubborness.
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