left: artwork by Tony Cragg, right: Bar Brass.
You all know the story of Alice in Wonderland, right? Young Alice falls down a rabbit hole one day and lands in a magical world unknown to her. That’s more or less what it’s like when you visit the Bildgießerei Noack in Berlin. Maybe you haven’t even thought about it, considering all the art to be discovered in Berlin. Why this should change as soon as possible, I tell you here.
Most of the time, all roads to art lead to the Museum Island – after all, there’s a lot to see there. But sometimes you get off the path. Then you may suddenly find yourself in front of an impressive industrial building that calls itself the Bildgießerei Noack. What at first glance is architecturally stunning carries in its interior the history of a long tradition: the casting of sculptures.
I’m sure that for many of us, Airbnb has completely changed the way we travel and experience cities and places over the past few years. Airbnb has opened doors to private homes, people’s lives and otherwise hard to reach places, giving us a more immersive travel experience than we could have ever imagined.
For some time now, Hosts can not only offer their homes on Airbnb, but also experiences. Just like the many unique stays on Airbnb, these experiences are offered by Hosts around the world who offer their guests authentic adventures for every conceivable interest.
Since our first blog post, we have been dedicated to capturing and documenting Berlin in its many facets so that the whole world can have a glimpse of this wonderful city. It has always been important to us that we address both the residents of this city, as well as visitors, no matter how long they are here and no matter where they originally come from. Our special focus is on those people who have come here and brought a piece of the part of the world they came from with them when making their projects. Because Berlin is never just Berlin – it’s a potpourri with influences from all over the world. And that’s a good thing.
The new interactive exhibition BERLIN GLOBAL, which ceremoniously opened last week in the new Humboldt Forum, takes exactly the opposite approach here, showing Berlin with all the footprints that this city has left behind in the world. We find this approach extremely exciting, which is why we took a closer look at the exhibition.
Schöneberg, Schöneberg…? Surely, some people who aren’t yet familiar with the city won’t know that Schöneberg is one of Berlin’s neighborhoods because that’s exactly what happened to me. For decades Schöneberg was the epicenter of Berlin’s creative underground, but today you will find Berlin’s interesting, cool, and artsy vibe in most of the Eastern neighborhoods. This unique atmosphere that makes people from all over the globe want to move to the German capital. That way some neighborhoods like Kreuzberg have kept their cool and edgy reputation over the years. But, as you can already imagine, there’s much more than meets the eye in Berlin’s west, especially in Schöneberg. Yes, if you are new in town Schöneberg is still worth a visit and we are going to explore some of its curious locations and little wonders.
FYI: Because Schöneberg is quite an extense neighborhood, I have focused on a specific area which it’s the Akazienkiez and places near The Red Island. In a map, you can see a distinctive triangle-shaped area of Schöneberg bordered by railway lines S1, U7 and the Ringbahn of Berlin. It was called like that due to the left-wing supporters that lived in that specific neighborhood.
Sometimes when we follow our everyday life in our little neighborhoods traveling between a maximum of three districts from work, to the girlfriend, and back home, we completely forget how big Berlin actually is and how much there is to discover beyond our usual comfort zone. And as we need to soak up as much daylight as possible in the darker and colder season of the year we have all the more reason to go out and explore the city beyond the S-Bahn ring.
Thanks to the multiple comfortable car sharing services we have here in Berlin the ride to our next adventure is literally just around the corner. For our brand new tour we have teamed up with one of those services: DriveNow which has one of the biggest fleets of cars – you will find their BMW and MINI all over the city. You can either use the car for a short practical ride from A to B and pay by minute, or you can book the car for a package of 3, 6, 9 or 24 hours to make little trips to further places.
artwork: Haegue Yang, photo Marco Funke
We’re always keeping you up to date on the coolest contemporary art exhibitions in town – highlighting every art week and pointing you right to the hottest galleries whenever we suggest a route for a particular hood. The Berlin crowd is famous for channeling their creativity in the most unusual ways so no wonder you always enjoy these tips! That’s why we thought we might just go ahead and present you a guide of the 10 most important contemporary art places in the city.
photo: Camilla Bundgaard.
Perhaps one of the main thoughts when thinking about Berlin, at least for young people that is, are its popular nightclubs, music venues, events, clubs and techno parties. In fact, Berlin has been gaining a reputation of this wild and sleepless city where the party never ends. However, Berlin is much more than just an endless rave – not to mention that it was the capital of Nazi Germany and it was also infamously divided during the Cold War – and its historical landmarks are a crucial part of what makes Berlin such an interesting city. So, although we usually try not to write about mainstream tourist sights, through the big urban icons listed in this piece you will get to understand a little bit of the history behind them.
After a year of suspension and anticipation it’s finally the time: Germany’s first street art and urban art museum Urban Nation is celebrating its big opening this coming Saturday (September 16th 2017, at 19h) and we had the chance to take a sneak peek and snap some pictures in advance!
Urban Nation has a really compelling history here in Berlin. Founder Yasha Young started the project in 2013 by organizing exhibitions on the many empty facades of Berlin’s building. We owe many of Berlin’s cool street art murals to her. Before that she used to run an urban art gallery in Berlin and New York, but the few walls of a gallery space were simply not big enough for what she envisioned. With Urban Nation of course there was a masterplan behind it. Funded by the Berliner Leben foundation and designed by prestigious architecture bureau Graft she created the first museum for street art and urban art in Germany – right in the heart of Schöneberg. Thanks to the ever changing murals in the neighborhood the whole area around Bülowstraße has now been transformed into a hot spot for urban art. Whole building facades are covered with artworks there which is quite the contrast to the many grey residential buildings in Berlin.
Urban Nation aims to become not only an exhibition space for artists who used to present their work on the streets, but also an archive for urban art like it never existed before anywhere. It’s an exciting edition to the art and museum scene of Berlin and we are excited to see what the future holds for this place.
Our fascination never stops for this city which just keeps on giving when it comes to amazing locations, and here we are, presenting you one more: the Animal Anatomy Theater. Constructed in 1789 by the same architect who designed the Brandenburg Gate (!), the building is actually the oldest (and definitely the loveliest) academic one still existing in Berlin, having hosted decades of animal dissections. Since 2013, however, it has seen a new life as an experimental exhibition space, under the Hermann von Helmholtz-Zentrum für Kulturtechnik.
This neoclassical gem, conceived by Teatro Anatomico in Padua, had served as an anatomy theater for veterinary students. After extensive restoration, and maintaining the character of a laboratory, it is now a cultural institution hosting students’ research findings, art exhibitions and events, while its great acoustics has been the reason for concerts to take place there as well! Read on…
photo: Karsten Hintz
Probably the best thing about Berlin is the fact that it’s so diverse that no matter what you’re interested in, you can find a whole bunch of places here that will enable you to pursue your passion. Same goes for design – apart from such amazing examples of outstanding architectural thought like the Martin Gropius Bau or the St. Agnes Church, there’s also plenty of museums devoted to the subject, like the Bauhaus Archive or the Kunstgewerbemuseum. You can also get inspired by new initiatives of people who’re keen on creating beautiful and functional things, like the guys from Fundamental Berlin or LLot LLov. More about them and similar suggestions after the jump!