Artist Projects “Out of Order” Message onto European Central Bank During Greek Referendum Weekend

Bienkowski projected the message on the ECB Headquarters on Friday Photo: Fredrik von Erichsen/dpa via Der Stadard

The European Central Bank building turned into a big projection screen on Friday night, as light artist Oliver Bienkowski projected the message “Außer Betrieb” (out of order) on the ECB’s headquarters in the German city of Frankfurt.

The guerilla light installation, which was visible from afar, quickly went viral on social media. He also projected the Batman symbol on the building. But the Düsseldorf-based Bienkowski avoided giving a definitive explanation on the meaning of his stunt.

He told the German news agency DPA, “We want to leave it open to interpretation, so that everyone can form their own opinion.”

The message comes after the ECB denied Greece a fresh loan Photo: Aris Messinis/AFP/Getty Images

The message comes after the ECB denied Greece further emergency funding
Photo: Aris Messinis/AFP/Getty Images

However, the timing of the project coincided with the exacerbation of the Greek debt crisis, and the referendum which saw the Greek people reject the Eurozone’s terms of a rescue package.

According to the BBC Greek banks are quickly running out of cash and have imposed capital controls, restricting citizens to withdrawing €60 a day. Banks have been closed since last Monday after the ECB declined to grant Greece emergency funding.

Meanwhile a Police spokesperson in Frankfurt told Hessischer Rundfunk that they were not aware of the projection, and are investigating the incident.

Greeks have been limited to withdrawing  €60 ($66) a day as banks run out of cash Photo: John Kolesidis via Reuters

Greeks have been limited to withdrawing €60 a day as banks run out of cash
Photo: John Kolesidis via Reuters

In 2014 Bienkowski gained media attention for projecting a picture of Barack Obama next to the phrase “NSA in da house” onto the facade of the US Embassy in Berlin.


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