Author Archive

A Mysterious Burning Lantern in Kreuzberg

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There she is. A lantern burning all alone. In the quietness of a Spring night in Berlin Kreuzberg. Nobody is walking around, because it is still too cold to go for a walk at night. It’s not night anymore, still it’s not day yet either. But the brightest light is without any doubt the lantern itself. Flickering like a friendly fireplace without looking damaged or vandalized at all.

This weird setting is somehow quite explanatory for the work of video artist Johannes Vogl. The Berlin-based artist creates sculptures with everyday objects and often thermodynamic manipulation. His had a bit of a viral hit on big platforms like Nowness with a video showing a burning swing.

But for me personally the burning lantern is my favorite one. Not because it is so charismatically situated at the 3-Länder-Eck where the canals of the river Spree of Treptow, Kreuzberg and Neukölln meet. It’s more the meditative and ghostly surreal effect that this video has on me that made me want to write about it. See for yourself. The burning lantern and a couple more videos by Johannes Vogl, after the jump.

Claudio by Claudio
on March 20th, 2017
in Art, Videos

Goodbye to my Favorite Berghain Artwork

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Piotr Nathan, The Rituals of Disappearance, Berghain, Berlin (2004), photo: © Christine Frenzl

A visual memory can be triggered over and over again by art and architecture. Therefore it is like saying goodbye to one part of your own history when a building or an artwork has to leave its original place. This morning the news spread out that the artwork by Piotr Nathan which is presented in the entrance hall of Berghain will be sold piece by piece on this website.

First I was kind of sad, about the fact that I will not see the entire artwork in the original form again. I remember seeing it over 10 years ago for the first time and being impressed by the fine lines creating the landscape and storms. The artwork is like a mysterious representation of a natural phenomena. Nature that was regarded as divinity in indigenous times and that loved and feared by the little humans at the same time.

The Rituals of Disappearance (2004) have nowadays such a cult-status that it probably won’t last long until its completely sold out (in fact only an hour after its release only a few blank plates were left to buy).  The artist prefers to sell it in fragments to the people who have experienced and loved the club, and wants those who danced near the mural to have a part of it. The lasting impression of the complete work should exist only in the minds of those who experienced it at the club. A memory to keep up in mind and cherish for its beauty and brutality at the same time.

And since  life ist fortunately not just about old memories let’s be excited about the new dance floor and what artworks will be presented there…

Claudio by Claudio
on March 17th, 2017
in Art

In Bed with Berliners

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There are some days in this city we call Berlin when you JUST WANT TO STAY IN BED. Simply forever. When you are with somebody special that you simply cannot separate from. Or when you are just happy with yourself, being lazy with a book, your diary or your laptop in front of you with your favorite TV series. And the best part? You can be naked as much as you want because there are cushions and blankets serving as your shield against the cold and hostile world out there.

I know in fact many Berliners who can lead quite bed-centric lives here completely ignoring all social activities, cool events or rays of sunlight outside becaue they prefer to just stay in and cuddle naked with their pillow, their loved ones or their loved ONS. The Berlin-based bed makers of Hochflieger came up with an incredibly intimate photo series of Berliners in their homes in their bed all naked. Enjoy the cosy photographs, preferably from the comfort of your own bed…

Claudio by Claudio
on March 14th, 2017
in Products

Mehrwert – A Colorful Concept Diner against Food Waste

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photos: Tabea Mathern

Let’s start with an incredible and really shocking fact: about 18 million tons of edible food are thrown away every year in Germany. And with the large number of restaurants and supermarket in Berlin, I guess our beloved city is not doing any better. The impact of the food waste on our economy and environment is huge, affecting people’s and animal’s lives all over the planet.

To understand from where waste comes from, how this affects your life and our lives in general, and to get input for changing this horrible food waste the Guerilla Architects, the Entretempo Kitchen Gallery and the visual artist Tabea Mathern decided to created a unique project together.

Right in the middle of Prenzlauer Berg inside a gallery space near Senefelder Platz they started the project Mehrwert, a fast food diner completely made of recycled materials and only serving responsibly sourced food. But this place is not only an artistic pop-up restaurant. The aim is to create awareness and to share opinions and ideas to make our food consumption a bit less harmful for our world and our future. This happened for instance during several workshops and events during the last weeks.

If you want to check out this place, it’s open during the week from 10h to 16h and sometimes for special dinner events on the weekend (such as this Sunday). The closing party is going to take place on March 18th 2017.

Claudio by Claudio
on March 10th, 2017
in Art, Prenzlauer Berg, Restaurants

The Opera of the Grotesque: Don Giovanni by Herbert Fritsch

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photo: Monica Rittershaus

Don Giovanni was basically a man-slut. But even back in the times when good sexy parties were not taking place at Berghain but in good old Venice (can you imagine), his seductive behavior with noble women and whores alike put him in a lot of trouble.

If you want to know more about this fascinating slut historical person I recommend you to have a look at the program of Komische Oper. There the master of the grotesque, acclaimed theater director Herbert Fritsch, gave the old opera composed by candylicious Austrian genius Mozart a new touch of craziness. What makes the success formula complete is the collaboration with Victoria Behr who really knows how to bring theater costumes to an oscar-worthy 5th element kind of level.

We are giving away 1×2 Tickets for the March 23rd 2017. Have a look at the dates and more photos after the jump.

Claudio by Claudio
on March 8th, 2017
in Theater

Treasure Hunting for the Favorite Books of Berliners

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photo: Jule Müller

What books do Berliners like to read? I guess you could easily look up at some sales statistics from Dussmann or other giant book stores, but you would not get a good result. Because we all know that a lot of sold books will have the poor faith of ending up as an unwanted present to somebody who rather scrolls through Instagram in his free time (poor book).

But if you really want to know what books Berliners love to read you have to look around in a special public area: the U- and S-Bahn. Because, either you hate it or love it, but the Berlin subway is definitely a display of Berlin’s variety, showing you the most interesting and sometimes the most horrendous people, attitudes and behaviors Berlin has to offer.

My friends from Blogfabrik Judith Poznan and Jacob Schickler decided to look out for the more interesting kinds of human behavior and instead of asking what beer people on the U8 were spilling on the floor the decided to look into which books Berliners were reading. In her former past Judith was a hot book-shop-employee (which is the soft version of a hot librarian) and is an expert on books. This passion, her editorial skills and Jacob’s love and talent for photography brought them to create the Facebook Page Behind Berlin Books where they regularly share portraits of strangers with their books and their stories.

If you ask me, approaching strangers on the subway and asking them what kind of books they are reading and letting them tell you more about it (under the disguise of a journalistic project of course) is a hell of a flirting tactic, I should definitely include it in my guide How to get to know your U-Bahn Crush.

We collected a couple of shots for you to get a taste for the project after the jump. If you prefer seeing the portraits in real life then join us at their vernissage this week where they will show their favorite snaps and stories.

Claudio by Claudio
on March 6th, 2017
in Stories

Dance\\\Ruption: Breaking the Rules of Classic Dance

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photos: Jacob Schickler

The old classical stage arts like Opera and Ballet not only have an aura of exclusivity through the high skill set you need to master to be part of one company. It is also a fix set of rules and hierarchies that makes this art forms a closed world, that usually excludes innovation and change.

But in a world of digital disruption, where everybody can be an artist, a poet or a photographer just by creating things for the internet also the old castles of the cultural world feel a little earthquake of change is needed to be still appealing to a younger audience. An audience that is not impressed by discipline and humility but rather by the creativity of breaking old fashioned ways of thinking. A disruption that will cause new qualities and unexpected results to emerge.

Embracing the concept of surprise I can’t really tell you how the 9 new choreographies of the Dance\\\Ruption performances this weekend will end up to be, but I am more than fond of the idea behind it.  In this special choreographers’ lab, selected company members of Staatsballett – Berlin will switch to the role of a choreographer and devise their own pieces together with their colleagues. These choreographies – all of them world premieres – will then be presented to the public in the rough and beautiful setting of the Tischlerei der Deutschen Oper. The idea is to break given roles and traditions to present the future of choreography today.

We had an exclusive sneak peek at the rehearsal starring Paul Busch and Patricia Zhou, dancing the choreography of Olaf Kollmannsperger. Check out the results after the jump.

Claudio by Claudio
on March 2nd, 2017
in Art, Photos, Theater

Backstage Experience at Berlinale 2017

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Berlin is definitely not L.A. Even though the German capital has several production companies and the big Filmstudios Babelsberg right outside the city, during the year the local movie-industry is nearly invisible. Invisible but not non-existent. No wonder they shine even brighter at the biggest festival in Germany for contemporary film culture: Berlinale.

At this year’s edition not only did we have the chance to visit the press previews from several movies but also we got an exclusive backstage tour of the festival including a visit to the photo studio with Canon, sponsor and creative partner of the festival.

We breathed some air of glamour and lots of love and devotion for the art on celluloid while speaking with the team of Berlinale who did not hesitate to answer all our questions and explain us in details everything about the cultural DNA of this celebration of creativity.

After the jump we show you our Backstage discoveries and tell you more about our incredible highlight of the festival.

Claudio by Claudio
on February 17th, 2017
in Movies, Photos, TV

Celebrating Christo’s Work in Berlin

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© Christo, Photo: Wolfgang Volz

Christo’s Wrapped Reichstag was the first piece of contemporary art that I remember encountering as a child. The image of the building wrapped in silver textile has stayed in my head since then. But what’s impressive is that I didn’t see the installation happening live. Instead I remember seeing it on a picture on a wall of an Italian restaurant in Berlin. A place we casually went to with my parents as we visited the city. The photography was even signed by the artist himself. My parents took notice of it and told me the whole story.

Last summer Christo created Floating Piers in northern Italy. It was the first piece of his art I saw going viral in social media. Maybe the dynamic of communications has changed dramatically over the years, but I guess that Christo still is one of the few artists that can create such a large scale impact in our daily communication and visuality.

I am kind of sad because I probably won’t ever see a piece of his art happening in Berlin again, since his artworks are always unique and temporary. But what we can do to enjoy more of his art is taking a deeper look into the process of creation by checking out the art books around the art pieces published by the Taschen publishing house.

Today, Monday the 13th of February Christo will be in the Taschen store to sign himself his new books about the Floating Piers. Maybe you have time to check it out. After the jump you will find some more impressions of the book called Wrapped about the Reichstag wrapping.

Claudio by Claudio
on February 13th, 2017
in Art

Frames of Berlin – A Photo Contest without Boundaries

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Photo: Brandy Eve Allen

How to capture the constant change of things in one single photographic picture? What things, you might ask. Not the change of the human body, change of climate or the change of political powers. These changes seem easy to capture (but harder to process). But what seems nearly impossible is the idea of capturing the everyday transformation of something as complex as a city in one frame. Still, this is what the competition, Frames of Berlin is all about.

Claudio by Claudio
on January 31st, 2017
in Photos