Chiharu Shiota and Sasha Waltz & Guests Collaborate at König Galerie

Chiharu Shiota and Sasha Waltz & Guests Collaborate at König Galerie

photos: Arata Mori.

There are so many wonderful creatives making art in Berlin, and it’s always a joy to see two of our favorites collaborating. This week, two of them, artist Chiharu Shiota and the dance company Sasha Waltz and Guests, are collaborating in an online event that you definitely don’t want to miss. A stunning installation and a dance performance will be fused together at the iconic König Galerie and you can join in online.

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These Special Online Events Will Treat Your Corona Blues Through Dance, Theater & Digital Art

These Special Online Events Will Treat Your Corona Blues Through Dance, Theater & Digital Art

As a 27-year-old night owl in Berlin, who once devoted himself so dearly to the nightlife and party scene, sometimes I question myself how I ended up spending my Friday night taking an online quiz to find out which döner sauce I am. Now I’m sure most of you can already relate. Corona forced our boundaries of mundane activities to a whole new level. You won’t be surprised to find out you’re not the only one watching an old show on TV and find yourself wondering how the actors are so close to each other without wearing a mask. While we are adapting to the new normal, artists and performers are working hard to bring us the best on digital platforms to keep us connected to the world and we can’t thank them enough. You will be extra happy if you love immersive experiences, dance, theater, opera, digital art, and drag shows! Here is a list of online events you can book right now!

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Berlin, Augmented Berlin: An AR Exhibition by High Snobiety

Berlin, Augmented Berlin: An AR Exhibition by High Snobiety

photo: Manuel Rossner. 

One of the major challenges of the new world we’re living in right now – still in the middle of a pandemic – is rethinking some of the old ways and concepts that we are so used to and to see how they fit into this new reality. In many cases, it’s out of necessity, but in some, it’s also an opportunity. We can expect many things to go back to normal after the pandemic, but wouldn’t it be a waste if we didn’t use the momentum to push the envelope a bit on developments that were already on their way but that are especially fitting for our current circumstances? I’m thinking here of things like remote working, e-learning, live streaming, and – of course – digital art.

The digital program “Berlin, Berlin” that is initated and presented by our colleagues from High Snobiety starting today in conjuction with the final weekend of Berlin Fashion Week is set to explore exactly those opportunities I’m talking about inviting important initiatives, musicians, artists, and designer of the city such as United We Stream, Ellen Allien, Âme, GmbH, and Olafur Eliasson to create one cross-genre experience that is certainly shaping up to be a highlight of the current lockdown period we’re in.

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The Return of a Berlin Icon: Neue Nationalgalerie to Reopen

The Return of a Berlin Icon: Neue Nationalgalerie to Reopen

BBR / photo: Thomas Bruns. 

Those of you who have been in Berlin for more than a minute might remember that we actually had an equivalent to New York’s famous MoMA not too long ago but it somehow vanished behind a construction fence in what feels like ages ago. I’m talking about the Neue Nationalgalerie on Potsdamer Straße down the street from the Philharmonic and the Kulturforum.

The famous museum had been Berlin’s main exhibition space for Modern Art for almost 50 years until it had to close back in 2014 because of the growing pains of the building. The building from the late 60s is one of Berlin’s architectural icons, designed by former Bauhaus director Ludwig Mies van der Rohe. It’s actually the last building he designed in Europe.

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Strangers in Berlin: Breaking the Ice During Social Distancing

Strangers in Berlin: Breaking the Ice During Social Distancing

With the new social distancing measures during the extended second lockdown, the idea of meeting a stranger is pretty much a contradiction. But how come the craving for social interactions is so big right now? Is it the season, is it the allure of something forbidden, or a simple case of “you don’t know what you’ve got till it’s gone”?

Visual artist Tanya Sharapova has decided to explore this idea as a reaction to the second lockdown which has proven to be such an odd and testing time. The first lockdown already prompted a string of artists to come out with wonderful photo series such as the window photos from Lovis Ostenrik, the daytime/nighttime outfits by Kseniya Apresyan, the nude social distancing portrait by Aja Jacques, and the Together A Part series by AnaHell and Nathalie Dreier. But the second lockdown has been quieter in terms of creative output – even for ourselves. So we are glad to be able to share Tanya’s series “Strangers” here with you.

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16 Amazing Creative Responses to the Pandemic from Berlin

16 Amazing Creative Responses to the Pandemic from Berlin

This year was quite different, wasn’t it? There was a lot of crazy stuff happening, but we can all agree on what the most significant thing was: the pandemic. If you would have told me a year ago that this would happen, I probably would not have believed you. But here we are, 9 months into a global outbreak of an airborne viral disease that has turned the world upside down.

Of course, this pandemic brought us a lot of negative things, but I don’t want to focus on those – you can simply turn on the news for that. I want to focus on the things that were good, specifically on how people responded to the crisis in positive ways. While a lot of us were struggling with our lives, our work, and our mental health, some people gathered their creative energies to come up with great things to brighten the days of everyone else and show some optimistic spirit.

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Discover GlogauAIR’s Virtual Open Studios Online

Discover GlogauAIR’s Virtual Open Studios Online

photo: MiCKi CHOMiCKi. 

This week I went to an art exhibition like no other at GlogauAIR. It was a physical exhibition that won’t open to the public, at least not physically. GlogauAIR is a non-profit art space and residency located in Kreuzberg that offers 13 studios to international artists to live and create for three months at a time. During the coronavirus pandemic, artist residency and exhibition looks very different. Although each of the artists began by creating analog artwork, the exhibition this year is virtual, so all of the pieces had to be translated online. Some chose to simply photograph their work while others completely changed their media to reflect the virtual format. One of the residents is even a “virtual resident” creating art from far away and joining the community of artists through a screen.

I had the pleasure and privilege to be invited to visit the space during their Open Studios Exhibition. I spoke with each of the artists about their artwork and their time in Berlin during the pandemic. Here’s what each of them had to say:

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The Fate of Berlin’s Very Own Mysterious Monolith

The Fate of Berlin’s Very Own Mysterious Monolith

As if this year wasn’t already like a Kubrick film, mysterious monoliths like the one in 2001: Space Odyssey started appearing around the world. And I bet you didn’t know that Berlin had its own.

The first monolith, found in Utah’s Red Rock Country by some biologists surveying bighorn sheep from a helicopter, was placed there sometime in 2016.

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Virtual Gallery New Dawn Explores the Future of Experiencing Art

Virtual Gallery New Dawn Explores the Future of Experiencing Art

Each year, as the temperature drops and the days grow shorter, gloves become increasingly important. Even on my five-minute bike ride to work my knuckles freeze, dry, and crack without the pair I picked up at a flea market in Amsterdam last year (soft suede and obnoxiously leopard print because I can never pass up an opportunity to be as extra as humanly possible). Gloves are functional, beautiful, and provide another layer of the self. They wrap around the human shape but are not constrained by it; I may not be a leopard but with my gloves, my hands are.

If the frigid Berlin weather doesn’t offer enough glove appreciation for you, there is another remedy. NEW DAWN | Tools to Touch in Times Ahead, a virtual-reality gallery experience uses the glove as its focal point. The multi-media display features 33 artists who explore the glove through photography, CGI, animation, graphic design, dance, performance, sound design, and curatorial practices as a “device for enabling holistic experiences in a discursive, material, and visual speculative future.” And to experience it you don’t have to leave the comfort of your screen.

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A Berlin Utopia: An Optimistic Vision of Oberbaumbrücke

A Berlin Utopia: An Optimistic Vision of Oberbaumbrücke

Today we want to share with you a very optimistic and cheerful piece of art that we hope will brighten your day a little as it did ours.

We already shared with you the work of Portuguese artist and architect Bruno Pinto da Cruz a while ago with our feature about his ISOMATIC pieces and in our guide about Portuguese Life in Berlin. He has now followed up with a splendid new Berlin-themed piece of his vivid ISOMATIC series that you need to see.

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