Berlin has always been a place for new beginnings. Many people come here to start a new life. Berlin becomes their personal clean slate.
“Neuanfang” is a photo project that wants to show the everyday life of four “Wahlberliner” (Berliners by choice). With my camera I follow them to their favorite places, in particular the places where they can “breathe” their new beginning in the German capital. It’s all about “change” – change as a new way of life that is completely different from the lives in their respective hometowns.
Trying to catch their thoughts is an inspiring process for me because this topic touches me deeply. I am a Wahlberliner, too. I share their feelings and even if I think that we are all very different, this magical feeling of a new beginning simply connects us.
For the longest time of my life in Berlin the appearance of street musicians made me want to change the car of the subway or the side of the street. For some reason only the least talented people on the planet seemed to be the ones who decided to play live in public here. But in the past few years this has changed. A lot. Now all of a sudden I find myself amazed by the quality of the music that we get to hear now in the U-Bahn stations. I guess the influx of people coming to Berlin in recent time also brought some talent.
The Busker Diaries is a new video series dedicated to the most talented street musicians. The term Busker itself is pretty new to me, I guess it’s a a shorter and more sexy way to describe that you play music in the streets and make a living from the donations of the people and self-produced CD sales. Of the three episodes that have been released so far we like the first one the most with the blue-haired Katie O’Connor who makes really good folk music. Enjoy the film after the jump!
For the upcoming Berlin Festival and the Re:Publica conference the makers of the Busker Diaries are hosting open stages that still have some available slots for musicians. If you are interested you can contact them through their Facebook page.
Normal. What is that? A word, whose meaning is different to everyone. It includes and excludes. Everything that is different, not normal, should change. To become normal. Therefore, we strive to be different. Better, more beautiful, richer. Individual. Different, not like the others. In a word, normal.
Because if we are all equal, nobody is special anymore. But if everybody is special, then everybody is equal. We want to be special, but we want to be treated normally. We want to love and be loved. We want to live. We want health, comfort, happiness. And at least a smile each day.
Berlin is a city with a complicated history that left it with many scars. It was destroyed in the war, for a long time divided by a wall and since than struggling with a weak economy that sets it back compared to the rest of Germany. The scars are all over the city – some of them physical and you can touch them like cracks in the concrete, others are invisible, but you can feel them in the hearts and minds of the inhabitants of the city.
Jozef Ibarr is trying to draw a parallel between the scars of the city and the scars of the people who live in it with his new photo series. He has been fascinated with scars and the stories behind them for a while now, but since he came to Berlin his interest in the topic has grown even more. For his series he collects real physical scars in the streets and their human counterparts in the flesh of the people he meets here. He is still looking for more scars here, so if you have one that you would like to share a story about, get in touch with him. After a jump a few scars from his series.
photos: Thomas Knights
If you haven’t heard of it, red is the new black. Well, in the world of men admiration at least it seems. For the longest time redheads have had a tough time but now it seems they have become objects of desire for many people and I think that’s great. We live in a time where more and more people seem to appreciate and enjoy the diversity of human kind. I hope this development continues and than we can finally put things like discrimination against people who are different into the history books. Everyone is different in the end.
The British photographer Thomas Knights belongs to one of the many admirers and supporters of red heads and he is hugely successful with it. His portrait series RED HOT has been celebrated in many exhibitions and is widely covered in the media. Berlin-based publisher Bruno Gmünder has now turned the series into a book titled Red Hot 100 that has sold out its first couple of editions as quick as bananas in East Germany. To promote the book they created a huge exhibition with even more than 100 sexy redheads that is traveling around the world and has now reached Berlin. Tomorrow it will open at a gallery space inside the first floor of the Bikini Berlin. They will obviously sell signed copies of the awesome book and you will be able to meet a couple of the hot guys from the book. Enjoy some excerpts from the book after the jump.
One of the best experiences of coming to Berlin is the opportunity to meet new people. Berlin has so many wonderful people living her or passing through. And for a lot of people who visit or live here this is what makes the city special to them. The openness, the diversity, the beauty of the difference.
For Czech artist Martin Gabriel Pavel it must have felt exactly like that. And he thought to himself: What better way to meet new people in Berlin than taking pictures of them naked. Yes, in any other city you would probably not have a lot of success, but here everything is possible. Daily Portrait Berlin is a kind of chain reaction started by Martin and now living a life of its own. He started the process by taking a picture of Elle in her apartment. Naked. She than took his camera and made a photo of M who in turn took a photo of Jonathan and so on. The next one in line can be a friend or a stranger. He or she doesn’t have to be naked. It could be you. See the first results of the series of 365 photos after the jump and follow the project on here.
Some might call her art grotesque, others will call it majestic. In any case the artworks of the Berlin-based artist Pola Sieverding is one of a kind. Reflecting multiple aspects of masculinity her videos and photographs called our attention and made us curious for more. Therefore we connected with her to learn more about her vision and her artistic approach. Read the full interview and enjoy her sexual and sometimes revolting artwork.
Ballet dancing is one of the finest expressions of European culture. It created the creative base for today’s contemporary dance all over the world, and it’s also an art form with the perfect balance between lightness and power. Watching a ballet dancer perform is one of the most visually compelling experiences, and I am so glad that we have one of the most talented ballet companies here in Berlin: Staatsballett Berlin.
Combining their unique beauty with the rough urbanity of Berlin’s architectural landscape, we had a unique vision: shooting a fashion story showcasing a dance rehearsal on the rooftops of Berlin. Bringing new attention to the city’s rich cultural heritage, fashion photographer Olga Khristolyubova portrayed two of the most skilled dancers from Staatsballet: Sarah Mestrovic and Kevin Pouzou. Sarah is a native Berliner who has been enrolled in the company for ten years. She combines her artistic experience with a creative spark, making her move with lightness and passion over the roof of our shoot. Kevin is a french dancer who has been living and dancing in Berlin for 8 years now. His majestic beauty is nothing compared to his bravery and strength. Neither were afraid to move and bend over the abyss of the streets surrounding them; creating incredible images for us.
Since we shot on the last weekend of November, the air was already cold as ice, though the sun was fortunately shining. On top of their rehearsal gear, they wore Goose Feel down jackets and knits from We are Knitters: the perfect combination of warmth to help the dancers extend over the top of Berlin’s skyline, while also staying super-light and incredibly flexible so as to allow them to bend, leap and soar unimpeded while performing their magic. Enjoy the whole shoot after the jump, and stay tuned for the animated pictures soon to come.
Vegan subcultures have been spreading like wildfire in Berlin, and Sophia (journalist, food blogger and vegan extraordinaire) is here to show us the ropes. Her creative and colourful recipes are inspiring, and her passion for food is infectious. Since 2011, Sophia Hoffmann has been sharing her own delicious and innovative recipes on her blog, Oh, Sophia, assuring the world that animal products are not needed to create beautiful, delicious and nutritious meals. If you thought veganism couldn’t be fun, healthy and enjoyable as a lifestyle, think again. Sophia is here to bring light to vegan living with her themed vegan dinners, restaurant recommendations and the launch of her exciting new cookbook. Learn more about this quirky lady and let her spruce up your vegan experience in Berlin with events and ideas after the jump.
If you would like to know how to best spend your day in Berlin as a vegan you should check out our new Vegan Route on the Friendly Berlin iPhone App curated by Sophia. Enjoy!
These days Berlin is hosting a very special guest in the city. Starting his immensely successful career as a Poissonier at McDonalds and climbing the ladder to cooking at 3 Michelin stars restaurant El Bulli, Richard Blais is a force to be reckoned with. Crowned the winner of Top Chef All-Stars, this charming and innovative chef has also been the host of TV series such as Cook Your Ass Off and The Hungry Games. With three restaurants under his wing and a prestigious James Beard nomination for his book he’s not slowing down.
For his latest endeavor he took on a reinterpretation of the classic American diner for the Cadillac Experience that is currently taking place in the underground parking garage at Bebelplatz. Taking his wildly creative approach to cooking, he treats the visitors with burgers, onion rings and milkshakes—all done with an experimental take. We caught up with the star chef before the opening of to talk about bringing the American diner experience to Europe, why we order fries instead of salad with our burgers (it’s more complicated than you think), how to survive naked in a forest, and of course his secret cooking weapon, liquid nitrogen.