Author Archive

Berlin Biting you in the Ass

Berlin by Tania Strauss 1

photos: Tania Strauss

My story is not different from anyone who has moved to Berlin and got stung by its venom. The venom is strong enough to infect you and leave you alive with its side effects, happily suffering. My friend describes it as “Berlin biting you in the ass”. This is quite accurate. You see a bite in the ass leaves a mark, a literal mark and a feeling. So does Berlin.

I moved to Berlin exactly 300 days ago. Just writing this is making it even harder to believe. 300 days. That is the longest I have ever been away from home. Well, I am kind of confused now as to where home is, but Berlin seems the most appropriate next to this word. I have found a home in the coldest, greyest, probably cruelest city in Germany. It is also the coolest, most liberal, accepting and very different from the rest of Germany.

by Guest Author
on August 9th, 2017
in Photos, Stories

Dancing in the Streets of Berlin

Dance Street Berlin Karneval

photos: Min Kyung Choi

Dearest Berlin, let us dance!

Already wearing your prettiest summer-dress and smiling your brightest smile!
Finally your days are long, your nights short. Melt into each other. Have no beginning and no end.
The melancholic spirit of winter seems long past and is forgiven.
Dark November blues melt simultaneously with my frozen lemon popsicles.
The sky painted in radiant blue. This is why I fell in love with you, Berlin.
Everything is blooming and the city is raging with life. Listening to street musicians while bathing in the sun.
Watching shimmering shadows dancing in the moonlight.
Dreams seem to come true during summer.

by Guest Author
on August 1st, 2017
in Photos, Stories

The Curious Haus Schwarzenberg

Haus Schwarzenberg Berlin-0449

Right around Hackescher Markt, the touristy yet hip area in Berlin Mitte, lies Haus Schwarzenberg, an unpretentious space where Art and creativity are allowed to flourish. Festooned with graffiti, paintings and strange iron objects, in Haus Schwarzenberg you are likely to get lost in a bizarre maze of doors that lead way to varied and fascinating attractions: from a museum dedicated Anne Frank’s feelings to an old workshop for the blind, here you can easily spend a whole day without getting bored.

I remember the first time I went to Haus Schwarzenberg – it was in late October, not long after I first moved to Berlin. At the time, I confess I did not know what to expect from the place itself; of course, I had seen pictures and read some information about it, but nothing had prepared my little heart for the impact of surprise – as I set foot at Haus Schwarzenberg I was immediately blown away. As a matter of fact, despite being always packed with curious tourists, it is impossible not to fall in love with this sample of Berlin’s underground universe that promises a complete sensory experience.

by Guest Author
on July 16th, 2017
in Mitte

Vietnamese Lifestyle in Berlin: Projects & People

AA7

Vietnamese people is Berlin’s largest East Asian community, comprising 1.16% of the total population. German or international friends usually immediately associate Vietnamese people with restaurants, nail salons, flower shops or convenience stores since the majority of those people operate in these businesses. However, the younger generations of Vietnamese in Berlin are actually a lively generation blended well into the German culture and the Berlin hippie lifestyle. They are also a very creative and artful cohort and the faces behind lots of successful businesses and entertaining activities in this cosmopolitan city. A look into the most outstanding and interesting projects by the Vietnamese youth in Berlin!

by Guest Author
on July 3rd, 2017
in Art, Events, Party, People

5 Hidden Contemporary Architecture Highlights in Berlin

architektur-baumhaus-balkon-terrasse-treppe-berlin-birke

photos: Laura Fiorio

The local architect Itay Friedman presents his top five lesser known but most appreciated buildings in Berlin.

Berlins’ urban and cultural experience is composed of numerous structures and architectural marvels, from museums to concert halls, clubs to historical structures, parks, and monuments to statues and government building. All together elegantly compose what we call and define as the rich Berlin urban cultural experience.

As an architect that has been working in Berlin for almost a decade, I find that so many unique and important buildings that contribute profoundly to our cities cultural and social growth in an unprecedented way go unknown and unrecognized.

In Berlin we can find great examples of the purest form of architecture, which unfortunately are not always in the limelight as mostly nowadays architecture is not measured and examined by its own merit but by the name of the architect him/herself.

As Tag der Architektur 2017 is upon us (a yearly event celebrating architecture), created with the support of local architects, foundations and led by the chamber of architects Berlin, I wanted to share my top five buildings that are mostly unknown and that I essentially love the most in Berlin. In my eyes, they represent uncompromised professionalism by colleagues with unwavering resolute to our field, that I am proud to work alongside in the same city.

by Guest Author
on June 19th, 2017
in Design

A Message to Berlin

Berlin by instalyrik_

photos: Jan Rückert

My dearest Berlin,

you are loud, moody and exhausting. A city driven by hectic energy.

But you are also calm. This is why we come from all around the world.

We – the outsiders of norms. We – who love to go against the flow.

And here with you we can be free. No cages, no bars.

You are a city of freedom. I can’t think of a city that is more free. No rules, no limitations.

by Guest Author
on June 16th, 2017
in Photos, Stories

Wear It: The Fashion Tech Festival in Berlin

wear it_0003

photos: Galya Feierman

Wear It Festival, unfolding the world of fashion tech in Palais Kulturbrauerei, offered a profoundly engaging and mind-expanding platform for wear it, discover it, produce it, believe it and network it, and provided a tremendously insightful two-day journey into the nature of IT. Gathering an incredible populace of participants ranging from inventors to fashion designers, from software geeks to academics, from cutting edge international companies to multimedia students, from start-ups, investors, government representatives to colorful wondering fashionistas in bling and synthetic fabrics, among others. The continuous flow of lectures in the auditorium added a few credits to your future masters degree while the foyer provided a trade fair-like exhibition of the latest merchandise and prototypes attracting future producers, collaborators and consumers.

Throughout the building the conversation continued and the visitors were drawn like moths to the numerous LED lights of high tech, brought together by workshops and free coffee and cake breaks and entertained by music and visuals. Kulturbrauerei’s scraped old walls joined in a familiar Berlin recipe with neon lights and synth sounds, but also counterpoised the sleek and refined appearance of future technology that is already happening now.

by Guest Author
on June 15th, 2017
in Design, Fashion, Photos

Berlin’s Summer Music & Arts Festivals 2017

nation

photo: Ben de Biel / Nation of Gondwana

It’s officially here! Festival season has begun,and we felt the need to tell you about all the great festivals coming up this summer in, around and sort of near Berlin. From German pop to techno, house and street food in Neukölln we’ve compiled a list of festivals that are definitely worth a visit. Take a break from the city life, pack your things and go to the beach or forest nearby! There will be great music, good food and art. From workshops to exhibitions, performances: you can have it all this summer – at the following festivals. See them after the jump.

by Guest Author
on June 6th, 2017
in Art, Events, Music

Dating in Berlin: Why You SHOULD Date German Guys

Dating a German-133024

I took me about a year of living in Germany to start feeling the challenges of life among Germans as a foreigner. Berlin had always been a dream for me, long before I even had any interest in partying, alcohol or other substances. I had always heard what everyone in the world seems to be hearing, that it is: a great multicultural place of freedom for artistic minds. So my first months living here were an exciting bliss even if I was working for a (rather particular) German family who lived nowhere near the city center, not in anyway close to Kreuzberg or Neukölln, but in a small village in the woods that was technically still Berlin but felt like a whole other world. This didn’t discourage me though, I took the bus (not even the S-Bahn went as far as where they lived, ah!) every evening after work to go to punk shows in cool squatted houses.

Half a year later when I finally broke free from my nanny job and moved to Friedrichshain I was still very excited and with no more job or endless bus trips to get anywhere, I felt free, alive and learned the real party ways. But then, another six months later, I started noticing all the small things my expat friends always seemed to complain about: passive aggressive Germans in the supermarket line, passive aggressive Germans who press the speed pedal of their car if they spot you jaywalking, passive aggressive Germans doing all these annoying little things all the time.

by Guest Author
on May 31st, 2017
in Stories

Goodbye Berlin

Goodbye Berlin

There was no more city, just countless trees lining a mirage of endless autobahn. There would be no more abrasive Sonnenallee mornings, no more late night Spätis, no more dreamy parties of sunshine dancing. There had been mere danglings of hopeful sunny days but I could no longer wait. I had made a decision and I was finally driving out of the city for good. No longer finding the fun in the perplexing allurement of escapism, I wriggled out of the grip of city life. Berlin had made final attempts of kindness — in classic narcissistic fashion — only after I had made the decision to leave.

Janis Joplin once said about men in an interview, “Have you ever seen those mule carts? They dangle a carrot in front of the mule’s face and it keeps chasing something it’s never gonna get.” I felt like I was the mule, stepping forward but never being able to taste the sweet earthy goodness. I saw Berlin as the carrot, having much to offer that I could never really savor.

by Guest Author
on May 29th, 2017
in Stories