You’d think a “speed show” is a crazy idea that would work in theory but wouldn’t find someone to dare execute it. I didn’t expect anyone to make a premiere, but hey, count on Berlin to make it happen. More specifically, the dude behind today&tomorrow. It was pretty cool, although I am still not sure what the .gifs had to do with anything (except that they were displayed on the computers and everything, I just mean that I don’t know what the .gifs were supposed to represent — but it’s not like I would get it either way, so yeah, whatever).
Switching the usual location of an exhibition from something posh, elegant, extravagant or formal to the very epitome of a store that is only needed when passed was an interesting contrast in the context of ‘artistic gallery space’. Art, without trying to touch much the controversial definition problems, is useless at its core, whereas a Späti ((Spätis are Berliner convenience stores similar to the concepts of 7/11, have tobacco and sometimes an integrated internet café)), or a net-café is purely functional in its existence and has no aesthetic requirements to work. That’s pretty much an artistic statement in itself. Or maybe I’m just overrating again.
Honestly, it felt completely natural to party it up in a convenience store– being there, roaming around racks of drinks and snacks, buying everything you need for the next day and hanging around on the sidewalks outside to meet your friends. It was like any other night on the streets but putting the Späti, one of the most important elements of Berlins city life, in the spotlight instead of the holding track.
For those who don’t know: German stores usually close down around 8 PM, so to get a drink during the night is nearly much impossible if you don’t want to spend your checks on expensive bars or nightclubs (or equally expensive gas stations). Berlin is almost exclusively advanced in that matter: Spätis are the sidekicks of the night, usually open 24 hours and significantly cheaper than their gas station counterparts. Berlin without Spätis? It would never have become the city it is today.
By the way, being on the street on a regular day in Kreuzberg is always an experience too — mobbing and shouting gangsters, deposit collectors and generally a lively atmosphere around the block. Makes Wedding looks pretty lonely right now.