The title [anderkawer] is a made-up word, blending the phonetic spelling of the English word undercover and its pronunciation with a German accent.


Using biographies and events in society, the long-term project [anderkawer] explores the situation of non-heteronormative families and the linked ideologies of families and motherhood over the past one-hundred years in Germany.

In the mirror of the print media and the public, the project investigates the invisibility and becoming visible of lesbian mothers in particular. A search for testimony of these women, who due to persecution and discrimination and their consequences often lived secretly and whose traces have been hardly investigated, leads to queer-feminist and historical archives. The artist goes on a detective-like search for clues. In the figure of a time-travelling private investigator, annette hollywood stages the archival materials a performative way. The investigations, beginning with the rise of the first gay and lesbian movement and their becoming visible in Berlin in the 1920s, then become increasingly difficult, for lesbian mothers remained hidden until the 1980s due to the threat of losing custody in case of divorce. The found items attest to invisibility, becoming visible, the debate in society as a whole, and today’s gradual acceptance of queer families and explore the use of language, its attribution and impact in the respective social climate.


This detective-like research, inspired by the artist’s own biography, and its results, invite a broad public to join the investigation using this constantly growing online-archive. [anderkawer] thus enables self-empowering historiography and knowledge about non-heteronormative family structures that are and have always been lived reality.  

annette hollywood, Berlin 2022