photos: Ema Discordant & Michal Andrysiak for Buttons

Berlin nightlife draws adventurous minds to our city like moths to the flame, craving to understand the myth of a Berlin night. Week after week, countless Berliners go down, down the rabbit hole to sweat, to move, to dance. Buttons at ://about blank is one of Berlin’s most infamous party nights. They have not only created a place where people of all sexualities and backgrounds can come together on the dance floor but established a diverse community of like-minded people. Their monthly photo reports are a unique visual collection of those who have a strong, personal connection to Berlin nightlife. Every dance floor has a unique story to tell, whether good or bad, a story of liberation, or escapism. We wanted to get to know these stories and asked around.  Let’s go on a journey through the mind of a Berlin night.

 

Mirthe

“Berlin Nights are made of presence. Pure, unrestricted, fleeting. You dive in and let dark ripples hit your ears and skin. You move with the waves, serene, unruly. In those depths, it might be pitch black, yet you see starry eyes and bodies unafraid – deep-down pearls of exceptional beauty. Come closer. Smile, touch, listen. There are no strangers here. There is no time. You’re here now, so swim as you like. And when you hit the surface again, then breathe the sun and drink the sky, bring home your treasures. Keep it a secret.”

 

Alyha

“My relationship with the Berlin nightlife is a love/hate relationship. I hate that I love it so much because of the freedom you have. If you want to be seen, you can dress up and go out and be seen! But if you just want to be part of the crowd then that is also available to you. My feelings have their ups and downs toward nightlife, but overall I can say that Berlin’s nightlife is the last jewel on earth you have to experience at least once in your life!”

Filipe

“What if the primal connection techno enables on a Berlin dance floor is just what it takes to avert the postmodern apocalypse the world is falling into? ‘Rattlesnake a charm on the dance floor'”

 

Chantal

“It’s almost like a real relationship. You have to put in time and effort, and you can feel every possible emotion from anger to sadness or total happiness.”

Thomas

“It was one hour before the picture was taken. In dark places beside the dance floor, I met my one and only. I asked him why he appeared so late in my life, in the year 2017. He answered he wasn’t ready yet. Since then I feel blessed.”  

 

Lee

“Believe it or not, my first time going out to a dance party was at age 21. I had just moved to Berlin on my Erasmus year and was living in Zehlendorf and my life was in between school and home. When I moved to Wedding suddenly the world opened up. I began frequenting Schwuz, Sissy at Loftus Hall and Homopatik at ://aboutblank (now Buttons). It was in these spaces, I really learned to let go — I found out that I love to dance and that I am fully able to be myself on the dance floor. At the time, I was also beginning to get my vogue together and really the two fed off each other, having the mental release and calm from dancing on the dance floor allowed me to dive into my performance.”

Souad

“As I go partying mainly to dance (and to gather with my friends) I would say that it helps me to relieve energy. On the dance floor, I can express myself, express feelings and emotions. When I’m on the dance floor I can really find myself.”

 

Ivan

“When I’m on the dance floor in Berlin, I feel empowered. It is truly liberating to be yourself.”

Matteo aka Jungle Mind

“The party scene in Berlin just got to me since the first time I visited a club here. The atmosphere of Berlin clubs and people is very unique. My sensation of dancing, it has always been great,  perfect music, at the perfect time with perfect people. Berlin dance floors are kind of a paradise, especially if you are gay and young because you have sexy music, plus you feel sexy and attractive. The LIGHTS, let’s take the example of Berghain, are so beautiful, and make half of the dance a dream, because when you are on the dance floor it’s like dreaming. This is also the sensation when I DJ. When I see people dancing behind the console, I feel like the creator of that dream. You can turn up the mood, or go down, and from one genre to another, make people feel sexy and loved. Berlin nightlife makes you feel like you are a part of a big family, everybody smiles at you, everybody knows you, and sometimes you recognize people who just come there that one time of the year, every year – it’s amazing. I probably met 70% of my friends on the dance floor, and with many, I go out dancing together.”

 

Fabio Boxikus

“Live the party, love the party, be the party.”

 

Fábio

“For a fashion designer who only wears his own work, Berlin nightlife is the perfect test tube to experiment new ideas without holding back. It celebrates individuality like no other place I’ve been.”

Daniel

“Berlin (night)life changed me. For the better. It freed my soul, my body and got me exploring and discovering what was already there, an inner essence – juvenile, and sinister alike. An essence that was otherwise hidden from the world, but ‘awoken in our own one’ – fueled by lust and leather, by light and love. You are only truly yourself when you fully let go. I came to Berlin just for that, and wow, how I received.”

 

Hasan

“Berlin’s nightlife is where the wild things are indeed, home of the most inspirational people I’ve ever met, a place where, in one night, you can have the best and worst moment of your life.”

Taylor

“I was obsessed, with the energy and experiences shared, the flexibility to dress crazy or be naked, moving my body to the maximum, forever exploring myself physically and mentally. It made me free to be and find the best version of me, but I don’t go there right now, maybe soon.”

 

Madalba 

The dance floor is that place where we have the change to extend our mental horizons and, in this way, evolve as human beings, especially as a social entity.”

Akua aka Lady Blacktronika

“Nightlife or daylife in Berlin is freedom of expression to me. It’s sex and love and wild abandon. It’s a playground for adults and I wouldn’t be who I am without it.”

 

Lily Violette

“To me, nightlife in Berlin represents a breath of fresh air, a renunciation of norms, a relationship between freedom and creativity, and a definition of party that is totally different from everywhere else in the world. It is like doing the funniest things you like, whenever you want to, in lots of different, original and atypical places with imaginative, brazen and funny people.”

 

Yu-Liang

“Free my mind on the dance floor. We belong together.”

 

Lucio

“Berlin is the city where I feel more comfortable than I did in all the places I lived before. The nightlife and ‘daylife’ party scene is unique. There are no stereotypes, it’s a mix of very different people and good music is all around. The dance floor is the best therapy for mind and soul.”

 

Anna Bolena aka DJ Sunset Motherfucker

“Stop thinking you belong to the underground scene when you are searching for the jump to the golden world of mainstream entertainment.”

Daniele

“FUTURE DOES NOT EXIST – EVERYTHING IS GOING TO BE DESTROYED – EVERY ACT OF THE HUMAN BEING IS ABOUT TRANSFORMATION – EVEN OURSELVES ARE GOING TO DIE – ONLY MATTERS SURVIVE – AND WE REALLY DON’T KNOW ANYTHING ABOUT THIS PROCESS – AS WE CONTINUOUSLY DIE – OUR SOUND IS THE SOUND OF DESTRUCTION – THE SOUND OF THE PROCESS OF ROT – WE SLOWLY ROT – WE SLOWLY ROT – WE SLOWLY ROT”

 

Demetris

“YOU ARE WHAT YOU DANCE.”

Gabriel

“For me, there could be no life at night without dancing. Maybe there won’t be prizes, paintings on the wall or books written about me dancing, but the moment I start to dance that’s when I have it all.”

 

Nayme

“It’s like sorcery. A raw, primitive and instinctive energy where I connect the most with my true self. Through the intensity of the music and the others.”

Ramses

“Freedom.”

 

Jacob & Danilo  – Organizers of Buttons

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