ALFA / Ich – Ein Groupie
‘Tis the season! Once a year, Berlin becomes the host for a film festival of a different kind. So all of you sexy people, sex lovers and kinky minds beware. While the Venus Sex Fair focuses on the kind of Porn that is rather sexist, the Porn Film Festival offers an alternative to normative stereotypes. In Germany’s oldest cinema, the Moviemento, they show serious documentaries about the work and life in the sex industry. They show movies with a more humorous approach to sex, with conceptual aesthetics and extraordinary stories. Pornographic films can be more than mainstream. The ones shown during this festival are all about authentic lust, sexy non-normative bodies, queer sex and erotic encounters between emancipated individuals with empowering narratives.
There are stories about fetishes, about homosexual pleasure and intimacy as well as short movies about the lives of refugees. Sexual assault and trauma are another aspect of sexuality that the festival also addresses. Wherever there is sex there is also issues of power and dominance. Where there is intimacy there can be pain and it is especially significant how this film festival gives a holistic view on sexuality with all its extremes. The dark ones as well as the euphoric ones. Besides showing movies the festival also offers a great range of events all focusing on sex, porn and politics. There are workshops, panels, readings and performances. Get a first glimpse here.
This interesting documentary by Petra Tschörtner about the district Prenzlauer Berg in the year of the reunification of Germany is a must-see for anyone interested in the recent history of the city. I like it because you can see a lot of parallels in today’s subculture and I also think it’s interesting to see how difficult the change of the reunification was for a lot of people in East Berlin. And take a look at the long-haired bearded photographer at the travesty show at 29 min. Could be the 90′s version of me
The story of Berghain being recognized as a venue that produces “work of cultural significance” and is, therefore, subject to lower taxation made it even to the Guardian a couple of weeks ago. It is impressive to say the very least; as it is the following song by Rachel Glassberg & The Disasters, which narrates an imaginary story about the famous photographer Sven Marquardt, who is also known as the notorious Berghain bouncer. Pay attention to the lyrics; they are full of grit and humor.
When you think back to the 1920s Berlin pretty much had a reputation for debauchery. For decades the world thought of Berlin as this sexually free and wild place where everything is possible and no phantasy was forbidden. But the time of the separation of the city changed things. Other things were more important to rebel against. There was still always a highly sexualized underground scene, but it was not really in the center of attention anymore.
In recent years this changed. Nightlife in Berlin is embracing its wild, naughty and sexually liberating side again with parties such as Pornceptual, Gegen and The House of Red Door. Debauchery is back and more excessive and scandalous than ever!
“Before you think, music makes you feel” states Pedro Carneiro Silva at the beginning of his beautiful video shot on a Berliner roof. Watching the sun go down along with the view over the city makes it impossible to argue against that, as one is instantly overwhelmed by the Brazilian’s heart-warming piano melody. The concrete of the roof in combination with the bricks, the clear sky, his music and voice in the background showcase a different aspect of the German capital: calm, creative, cordial; away from its well-known untameable wildness.
photo: Ilsa Hellman
There are moments, when Berlin gets too fast, too hectic, too tense and you need to get rid of all that built-up stress in your mind and body. Finnish videographer Ilsa Hellman and Yoga teacher Katri Aalto produced a short movie that reminds you of the fact that you don’t need a specific time or place to relax and let go. Actually it’s even healthier, when you learn to integrate calmness into your daily life, create space and make time for quiet moments. No matter, who is watching.
The duo shot a film that shows Yoga in Berlin’s underground. The interaction between the Yoga teacher’s flowing movement and the geometrical architecture of the U-Bahn stations to a minimalized soundtrack, reminds you of keeping your balance, because that is what life’s basically all about. If it is about work-life balance or keeping it equal between social stress and alone-time. We suppose most of us know the struggles of keeping a balance in life.
What might give the impression as merely a piece of entertainment, might include another layer, less bright and light-hearted than the first one. This is what I think every time I see a film or a play. The time, the effort and the mental resources one has to invest as a creator, are often nowhere to be seen in the final product. The same applies to this blog as well; behind the – digital – scenes things happen sometimes which we bravely tackle, in that we grit our teeth and make the best out of the hardships, so that we do not pester our readers with the unpleasant.
“Stay Strong” is a major theme for Actimel. In cooperation with the well-known drinkable yogurt we dealt with the topic of when one needs to stay strong here in Berlin a few weeks ago. The result is a humorous comic, created with great love by the illustrator and our colleague here at Blogfabrik Sophia Halamoda. Take a look at it below.
photo: Chris Phillips / Pornceptual
Out there in the world, Germany, and Berlin in particular, have a reputation of being sexually liberal places. Nudist beaches, sex parties, uncensored breasts on television, experimental sex practices, acceptance towards various sexual orientations and identities. You get the general idea. We Berliners are wild, excessive, and constantly horny – well, at least in the eyes of the rest of the world.
As a Berlin resident and German citizen I would never say that Germans are particularly naughty or more sex-crazy than other nations, nor did I have the impression that Berlin is sexually more open than other cities in Europe. Yes, maybe we have a few sex clubs more than other cities, but I doubt that there aren’t any places like that in the rest of the world. They might just be more behind closed doors and less publicly advertised. Here sex was always there: swingers clubs, dark rooms, fetish parties. But it was almost an alternative scene from my perspective, you could only see it if you knew where to look. It was the underground. But this is changing.
Now there is sex positivity, body positivity, feminist porn, and you could say a general awaking in the society from the bad dream that sex is something to be ashamed of and to keep in private. People are embracing sex more and with it, their own bodies and desires. Isn’t this something we should all strive for?
photo: Kristian van Kuijk
Trying to perfect the art of dating in Berlin, I’ve met different, recurring types of men and fell for them over and over again. One of them being the hedonist. You might have come across this beautiful creature as well. What makes him special is his way of not just being a stranger until your paths cross, but instead staying one until after you have had an intense encounter. Soaked up by the colors, lights, the music and parties, influenced by drugs and a never ending fear of missing out, he is feeling driven, always feeling the urge to experience more, more more. The hedonist came to Berlin to indulge life, to consume it. For him you will never be enough. Not because you are insufficient, or because he doesn’t care enough about you, but simply, because he wants so much, he wants it all. All the feelings, the euphoria of the first touch, the pain of hurting each other, the violence, the intense sex, the heartbreak and the comfort. By never giving you everything or entirely opening up, he will always leave you wanting more, giving you an inside into his emotional distress.
Today we want to share a charming little video and photo set with you that is the result of a collaboration of Instagrammer Franz Becker and photographer Lisa Müller. It portraits two girls swirling around in Berlin having a good time and looking quite fabulous at it. We totally adore the combination of the rough urban charm of Berlin and the cute fashionable girls. Speaking of which: The girls are wearing the pieces of the joyful festival-inspired fashion label Lone Rascal. But see for yourself after the jump.