Various Vietnamese-run flowershops in Berlin’s subway stations
10 August - 10 September 2014
Troi Oi launches its first project at "Blumen & Pflanzen & Dekorationen", a Vietnamese-owned flower shop located inside the Station Zoologischer Garten, on the subway platform of the train line U2 direction Pankow.
The project tracks the history of Vietnamese immigration. After the German reunification in 1990 the German government announced that only those who had legal means of financial support would be able to receive a residential permit. As a result more and more former Vietnamese guest workers turned to self-employment and floral stands became the popular choice at the time. Reasons for this were the low required start-up capital and the fact that the occupation as 'florist' does not require an apprenticeship nor good German language skills. Often situated in previously unused and cheap spaces, these flower stands were opened in former utility rooms or at sheltered corners within train stations in the hope for a high flux of customers. In their beginnings the floral shops often operated in a legal grey zone due to the undecided final purpose of these spaces.
Troi Oi re-imagines the flower shop as a place where new business flourishes and where financial stability for a large part of the Vietnamese community had always been found. A limited-edition sweater will be available at the flower shops located in the stations U2 Zoologischer Garten, S-Bahn Bellevue and U8 Schönleinstrasse, sold upon request by their owners, who in exchange receive a percentage of the sales. By utilizing the distribution system of the flower stands Troi Oi encourages the engagement with the Vietnamese community. At the same time the project aims to challenge traditional hierarchies of art, fashion and commerce.
Troi Oi is an interdisciplinary project between Nhu Duong and Sung Tieu offering a platform to examine their cultural heritage as Vietnamese immigrants living in the West.
Artwork: Nik Kosmas Graphic
Design: Chris Sherron
Blumen & Pflanzen & Dekorationen
U2 Zoologischer Garten
Platform Direction Pankow
Blumenladen S-Bahn Bellevue
Blumen & Grünpflanzen & Dekorationen