Author Archive

Let’s Call it a Day! A Bedtime Story for a Sleepless Society

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Berlin is a restless city. Spätis open 24/7, clubnights going on from Thursday afternoon to Monday morning and the high energy of the club kids on speed makes it sometimes hard to find a place to calm down, outside your own four walls. Israeli theater maker Hila Golan, Niva Dloomy and Ariel Nil Levy just released a new magical piece that’s calling attention to the sleep disorders of an entire society. The tale of the Princess and the Pea forms the framework of this theater performance about a world-known phenomenon that affects all parts of society. In this new version the pile of mattresses grows and grows, craving for dreams and relaxation, but a general restlessness keeps us awake.

In continuous self-optimization on the outer and the inner shell, private concerns, constant availability, and last but not least the feeling of helplessness and passive complicity in the face of current world events, the question arises: How can we get sleep? While the actors have to deal with the causes and consequences of ongoing insomnia, their environment becomes more and more unpredictable due to the sophisticated interplay of Christian Maith’s light design and stage design by media artist Mayan Printz. The bright and dark waking hours are captured by Eli Fabrikant’s composed “low-tech music”. You should not miss this performances in English going on now and in December. More pphotos and the dates after the jump.

Claudio by Claudio
on November 20th, 2014
in Theatre
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Nasty Peace – An Audio Walk about Gentrification in Kreuzberg

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photo: Silke Bauer

The monster of gentrification is eating Berlin’s free spirits and creative culture. Maybe this way of thinking is rather extreme, but what will happen to the so-called “cool neighbourhoods” when all people who are currently living there will not be able to afford it anymore. And much more important: what will happen to our city when the income will strictly determine where you can live. Not so much of a multi-cultural free society in the end. A horrible faith that happened already in so many cities before and that must be stopped in Berlin.

People have been protesting the rapidly rising rents for years at Kottbusser Tor in Kreuzberg. The theater collective copy &waste created an audio walk that guides right into a conflict zone for living space, money and love. Through the headphones you’ll hear just what it sounds like – the dividing of the loot. The audio walk is called “Nasty Peace” and it is in German, English and Turkish and is created with the participation of the Turkish community living in the neighborhood.

For Nasty Peace, copy&waste returned packing a great deal of research material: conversations with residents, observations of everyday life, sociological, scientific and philosophical texts about property and privatization play as significant a role as Berlin Circle, a piece by Charles Mee inspired by the same source as The Caucasian Chalk Circle and fantasy material such as Game of Thrones and Masters of the Universe. All the dates and the trailer after the jump.

Claudio by Claudio
on November 20th, 2014
in Kreuzberg, Theatre
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Architectural Hypnosis – Berlin Photography from Markus Studtmann

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Photo: Markus Studtmann

Berlins rough and urban architecture is not always appreciated as it should be. Sometimes you need a photographer and photoshop artist to refocus your perspective on the visual highlights Berlins facades have to offer. Markus Studtmann creates magical hypnotic photographies that reminds artwork from M.C.Escher. Watching the spiraling staircases, waving windows and infinite houses too long can cause a bit of a headache. Still you should enjoy this little photoshop masterpieces rethinking the boundaries of space and creating new architectural dimensions. More pictures after the jump.

Claudio by Claudio
on November 18th, 2014
in Art, City Guide, Photos
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Berlin’s Party Beards

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Nowadays men spend more time on grooming and shaping their beards than with their hair style. Maybe it is just a temporary trend, but right know a beard is the must-have accessory for any party lover. Since we are quite beardicted ourselves we wrote a story for alternative queer magazine Siegessäule gathering the most interesting beard styles from Berlin’s nightlife. From cute boys with mustaches, to Russian gangsters and bearded women Berlin can be quite the beard show. Be impressed by the diversity of beards after the jump.

Claudio by Claudio
on November 14th, 2014
in Party, People, Photos
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A Guide to Berlin’s Best Alpine Restaurants

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If you ever went skiing in the Alps, for instance in Kitzbühel, you know that there is nothing better after a full day of skiing than a warm lunch on the top of a white mountain inside a cosy hut. You don’t need a master in geography to notice that the Alps are not really nearby. Luckily to appreciate some mountain flavors you don’t have to leave Berlin since this city has some really nice restaurants serving savory Alpine cuisine.

To recreate a little Alpine feeling we put on our Ultra Light Down jackets from Uniqlo (previously featured here) and went on a little culinary excursion. Filling our bellies with Schnitzel, Kaiserschmarn and Käsespätzle we had some nice evenings around town. Check out the resulting list of our Top 5 Alpine restaurants in Berlin after the jump.

Claudio by Claudio
on November 11th, 2014
in Friedrichshain, Kreuzberg, Mitte, Restaurants, Tiergarten
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Wall and Chain – A Beautiful Animated Short about the Berlin Wall

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So many stories about the East and the West are now exploding in the media because of the 25th anniversary of the fall of the wall. I personally got the chance to hear so many great stories around it, that I wish I would have been old enough to participate mentally in the celebrations happening back then.  To get yourself in the nostalgic mood for the big event tonight happening all over Berlin we want to present you this very well done short film by Airbnb.

Wall and Chain is telling the true story of two former border guards from the East and the West sides of the border who met through a chance encounter on Airbnb in 2012. The meeting was life changing for Joerg who had never got closure on his experience guarding the West side of the border. Meeting Kai, who had guarded the East side, and hearing that they had the same experiences helped him to break down the mental barriers he still had towards Germany.

Usually I would be a little skeptical about a company using a political event for marketing goals. But I have to say that the short film is very genuine and does not come off as trying to sell something. It simply tells the story behind the two men very intensively and you should not miss to watch the clip.

Claudio by Claudio
on November 9th, 2014
in Art, Videos
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GIF-Love: Berlin in Motion by Erdal Inci

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Maybe some of you remember our first curated exhibition with animated Gifs called GIF.ME.BERLIN. Not just since then we were big fans of animated GIFs and can’t have enough of them. So it is probably no surprise for you that we want to share with you this nice discovery. The Turkish artist Erdal Inci creates interesting video art with looping effects. On his Tumblr you can look at some of his artwork transformed into a GIFs. Recently he payed a little visit to Berlin and used our beloved city as a frame work for some new art. The results, moving phantoms all over Berlin, are quite impressive. After the jump we have some of his looping GIF magic for you.
UPDATE: Inci just released a wonderful GIF from the Lichtgrenze-Celebrations you have to check out.

Claudio by Claudio
on November 8th, 2014
in Art
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30 Years of Siegessäule – A Retrospective of Queer Life in Berlin

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The LGBT culture in Berlin and the community behind it is probably one of the most diverse, lively and interesting scenes in Germany and probably also in Europe. No other city has such an active and beautiful queer subculture. And by culture we are referring not exclusively to nightlife but of course to art, theater, dance and literature. In all fields there are strong queer voices living and working in Berlin and this is quite the inspiration for all the young LGBT people coming here. For some these voices are maybe even too strong, calling it all a “Gay Mafia”. I am not so sure if this Gay Mafia really exists. For sure there is a community here who can be supportive in certain aspects for some artist. But being gay or LGBT doesn’t make the community of Berlin automatically love and accept every artwork you produce as we might have seen in the recent case of Dries Verhoeven.

One strong voice in the LGBT community is the monthly city magazine Siegessäule which is distributed free all over the city. Since the last edition we are collaborating with them on a new city column that comes out every second issue. Since the magazine just turned 30 we really want to congratulate them and to do so, we compiled a collection of the covers from 1984 until today. Also there is an exhibition at the Schwules Museum about the Siegessäule and tomorrow there will be a guided tour with gay filmmaker Rosa von Praunheim showing you around and telling you more about it. After the jump you can find the sometimes trashy, sometimes provocative but always fun covers of the magazine. We’re looking forward to another 30 years!

Claudio by Claudio
on November 7th, 2014
in Entertainment
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The Magical Berlin Illustrations of Cosimo Miorelli

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Especially in Autumn, Berlin has this magical dreamy feeling. You realize the city is going into hibernation for the next months and somehow everything slows visibly down and becomes obscure, dark and mysterious. Apparently I am not the only one with this vision. Berlin-based visual artist, illustrator and live performer Cosimo Miorelli shows Berlin’s dark and mystical side. In his illustrations and comic books Berlin reminds me more of Gotham City mixed with the Wonderland of Alice and a novel of Edgar Alan Poe.  The results are dark and dense illustrations with iconic Berlin buildings surrounded by magical creatures like flying whales or lonely city foxes in search for some human warmth.

From November 6-12 his art will be on display at the HB55 Kunstfabrik gallery. Tonight he will also perform a special live painting set with techno music called Der Träumer at 21h. After the jump some of his artworks and a trailer of his live sets.

Claudio by Claudio
on November 7th, 2014
in Art
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25 Years of the Fall of the Wall: Photography from Now and Then

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The commemoration celebrations for the 25th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall are creating quite the buzz around the city. Apart from the extremely beautiful idea of the light balloon project happening this Sunday, so many side events are also worth your attention. You can find a full list of events over here.

Today we want to focus on one particular exhibition from Yven Augustin. As a 19 year old boy he took pictures of several places around East Berlin. After 25 years he went to the same places and took the same photos again. This time experiment not only shows the changes of a quarter of a century but also the change between a socialist society and a capitalistic one. These images represent a memory for the changes happening in the city. Most of Berlin’s special character is due to the decades of separation.

Now unified and strong city, let’s hope the future will bring not just more gentrification and social injustice but also creative and intelligent solutions to the problems of a modern life in big cities.  I am sure Berlin can set a good example to the world how a city can be a better living place for it’s inhabitants. More photos of Yven Augustin and information about the exhibition after the jump.

Claudio by Claudio
on November 6th, 2014
in Art, Photos
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