uberlin

Epic collages of vintage Berlin photos

by James Glazebrook

Tripods at Mauerpark

Check out these stunning collages from our favourite new Tumblr, Old pictures of Berliners. Ana, a journalist originally from Madrid, started collecting old photos at Berlin flea markets when she moved to the city six months ago:

There are plenty of them, everywhere, just stacked inside buckets or lying around in albums. I’ve always liked old pictures, they are tiny windows to stories from the past, how people lived, the way they behaved and dressed, and how similar they sometimes look to us. Berlin seems like the perfect place to go picture hunting because it has gone through so many changes over the years, it’s interesting to place a family pic of a Berliner on a timeline and let the imagination flow.

Originally planning to share the photos, “to bring them to light after being lost”, Ana began creating collages that introduced sci-fi imagery and other anachronisms – placing the scenes of old Berlin in new contexts:

The inspiration comes mostly from word games, or maybe songs, or just a story or image I made up while looking at a particular photo. Sometimes I just cycle around Berlin and catch a scene that would work well with a picture I bought and I take a quick snap that I incorporate later into a collage.

We would love a giant print of Tripods at Mauerpark (above) – which of these images is your favourite?

Family meal

I went picture hunting today

Österreich

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Olympus OM-D: Photography Playground

by James Glazebrook

The interactive exhibition Olympus OM-D: Photography Playground has been extended until Sunday June 2nd – which is great news, not least because it gave us time to share our impressions before they’re totally irrelevant! Situated in the vast former opera and theatre prop factory which hosted Pret A Diner this year, the playground is a triumph of branding, a showcase of the Olympus OM-D digital camera and a great day out for anyone, regardless of their level of photography geekdom.

Different artists’ installations across three levels of the impressive Opernwerkstätten are designed specifically to provide amazing subjects, and occasionally feature the OM-D itself – as with my favourite, which hooks up a Korg synth to a dish of water atop a loudspeaker, and uses the camera to project the resulting patterns. Entrance is free, including rental of an Olympus OM-D (with valid ID*), so visitors can capture the lights, lazers, blacklit thread and weird Alice in Wonderland-inspired scenes. Check out the Olympus OM-D: Photography Playground website for details of how you can visit while you still can!

*You need an official ID card or passport to borrow a camera; a driving licence won’t do. Because of this, these photos were taken with Zoë’s own camera, not an Olympus OM-D.

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Behind the Scenes at C/O Berlin

by James Glazebrook

Behind the Scenes at C/O Berlin 1

Recently, C/O Berlin invited us to a private blogger tour of their current exhibition, Timeless beauty: 100 years of fashion photography from Man Ray to Mario Testino. We saw stunning work by Helmut Newton, David Bailey and even Diane Arbus, got the chance to reconnect with Chasing Heartbeats, The Field Office (see their post here), Grateful Grapefruit, Berlin Reified and meet for the first time the guys behind Finding Berlin (their post here) and Jenni Fuchs (see her review of the exhibition here and her behind the scenes photos here).

But the highlight of the tour was the rare opportunity of seeing behind the scenes of the photographic centre, as we were led by a curator up some back stairs to the top of the former Postfuhramt. Told to stick together, because some of the floor might be unsafe (!), we were shown the space between the domed roof and the cupola that formed the ceiling of the post office, and evidence that some conscientious soul had attempted to document the building’s original appearance (with small notecards placed in each space). While we won’t get the chance to see that again, we’ll definitely be back to enjoy C/O Berlin’s programme of “visual dialogue” – so big thanks to Hie-suk and the team!

Behind the Scenes at C/O Berlin 2

Behind the Scenes at C/O Berlin 4

Behind the Scenes at C/O Berlin 5

Behind the Scenes at C/O Berlin 3

Behind the Scenes at C/O Berlin 7

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Change of View: Berlin

by Guest Blogger

Change of View is a photo documentary article series that captures a personal view on the status quo of our cities. This article compares the view of Berlin by a local photographer and a foreign photographer, who then collaborated on two pictures. Enjoy this visual dialogue between Berlin photographer Marcus Werner and Copenhagen photographer Caroline Kurze. This article originally appeared on Smart Urban Stage.

1. WHAT MAKES YOU HAPPY IN THIS CITY?

Markus Werner secrets of Berlin

LOCAL
Discovering the secrets of the city

Berlin is a vast city with a ton of obvious things to like about it. What makes us happy though are not the elements that are on the surface but those which lie beneath it. Berlin is host to many secrets, from a cultural to a visual perspective. There are endless possibilities of exploring the many sides of a city. It’s all about seeing the details and interpreting them for ourselves. We appreciate how many different facets Berlin has to offer in that way.

Caroline Kurze faces of Berlin black and white

VISITOR
The faces of Berlin

Any city shows its true face by the way its citizens look and behave. Berlin is a melting pot of styles and characters. There is no way to sum them up, just like there is no way to sum up Berlin properly. What makes me happy is that I can just sit anywhere in Berlin and watch who passes me by, realizing that never will there be two characters even remotely alike.

2. WHAT INSPIRES YOU IN THIS CITY?

Markus Werner Prinzessinnengarten

LOCAL
Making something out of nothing

Berlin has many leftover spaces that have once been abandoned and forgotten. But there is a movement within the people of the city to use these places creatively and form them into something useful. It’s very inspiring to see what a small idea of a few people can achieve here and what motivates the individual to participate in the work. The Prinzessinnengarten at Moritzplatz in Kreuzberg, an urban gardening project, is a perfect example for that.

Caroline Kurze Berlin architecture

VISITOR
Composition of the city

Architecture is the most visually compelling element of a city, but Berlin basically draws you into it by its many contrasts and dichotomies. Behind every corner could lie the perfect shot and a most mesmerizing composition. For a photographer, that in itself is very inspiring; but I do believe that every person can actually profit, inspiration-wise, from a place that is as erratic as Berlin.

3. WHAT WORKS FOR YOU VERY WELL IN THIS CITY?

Markus Werner Admiralsbrücke

LOCAL
Youth Culture

If there’s one thing in Berlin that works, then youth culture it is. Every kid in the streets from Charlottenburg to Kreuzberg has the luck to grow up in a liberal and overall peaceful environment, thus enabling everyone from a young age on to participate in the shaping of the city. The Admiralsbrücke in Kreuzberg is, next to the vivid club scene, just one of those organically grown spots to hang out in the summer. Always packed with young adults, from the sporadic tourist to the local singer/songwriter presenting their talent, this is only possible thanks to the lax laws about drinking in public and the people’s general openess towards youths.

Caroline Kurze Hauptbahnhof uBahn

VISITOR
Public Transport

No doubt: Berlin is a huge place to get around. Besides a very comfortable traffic situation for all the passionate bikers, for a tourist the public transport possibilities are probably the most important. And thus, compared to many other big cities in the world, Berlin exceeds all expectations: buses go all night, hardly any train is late and the condition of the platforms are usually high quality. Logistically, this is probably what makes Berlin an easy place to visit as well.

4. WHAT WOULD YOU DO BETTER?

Markus Werner Blu graffiti Cuvrystrasse Berlin

LOCAL
Challenging Changes

After the relocation of the old YAAM club the place at Cuvrystr. is abandoned since. But in Berlin this doesn´t mean that it’s empty. To the contrary it gets used now as a nice chillout spot alongside the Spree river with a perfect view on the historic Oberbaumbrücke. You can find open air raves there as well as Barbecues or a graffiti wall of fame. It’s a free spot just how Berlinians like it.

Caroline Kurze Berlin Tempelhof landing strip

VISITOR
Weather & Water

The old Tempelhof airport is a raw diamond in the heart of the city. With the size of New York’s Central Park everybody is curious about how the area will develop in the next years. Until then it´s a perfect hangout spot for the summer with a lot of possibilities for outdoor activities and a nice open view.

5. HOW WOULD YOU DO IT BETTER?

Markus Werner Tempelhof beach

LOCAL
More water, and more nice weather

It would be cheeky to ask for a lot more than Berlin has already to offer. And yet there are exactly two things that seperate Berlin from a near state of perfection: more water, and more nice weather. The summers are short and the water is rare. It‘s unlikely that we can improve the situation by praying for a tropical climate or artifically attaching the sea to the borders of the city. But how about more water in parks and more free access to the rivers and lakes?

Caroline Kurze Blu graffiti Cuvrystrasse Berlin

VISITOR
Free state of mind

Berlin is a very rapidly changing city. With the new influx of tourists and the international hype drawing more and more investors to the German capital, citizens are often suprised by economic and political decisions, for instance such about free spaces. We would love for the people to accept and embrace these changes by getting involved, possibly even defending their city from too many economically driven influences to keep it in its lovable and free state of mind but all of that without becoming intolerant. This general interest is what has kept the waste land on Cuvrystraße in Kreuzberg a free place for everyone.

About the photographers:

Marcus WernerMarcus Werner
Local 
– Marcus Werner aka DT64 is a Video- and Photographer with an MA in Media Science and Intercultural Business Communications. Together with Clemens Poloczeck he runs the media agency SUPERIEST focusing on Production, Consulting and Conception of Video-Content. He also contributes to Finding Berlin.

Caroline KurzeCaroline Kurze
Visitor – Caroline Kurze is currently working as writer and photographer in Berlin. She just relocated from Copenhagen where she completed her studies and worked for one year. In Berlin she started as freelance editor and photographer at iGNANT. iGNANT offers the possibility to follow her passion for art, architecture, photography and design as well as developing her photographic approach.

Check out the Change of View looks at Istanbul, Madrid, London, Paris and Rome on Smart Urban Stage.

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Takeshi Suga Exhibition at Lomography Gallery Store Berlin

by James Glazebrook

Takeshi Suga 1

Takeshi Suga recently returned to Japan having spent a few years working for the NME, taking lo-fi backstage shots of bands like Two Door Cinema Club, Tribes and First Aid Kit. He’s coming back to Europe to open an exhibition of both his NME work and his dreamlike nostalgic shots of endless summers, at the Lomography Berlin gallery store. Suga’s also kind enough to be leading a Diana Mini workshop, during which he’ll explain how he gets “dreamy double exposures” with his cheap analogue camera.

Analogue cameras look and sound better than digital ones, don’t they? I also believe that the magic will be lost if I know I can shoot as many frames as I like

Takeshi Suga 2

Opening: Thursday 5th July 2012 from 6pm to 10pm
Exhibition: Friday 6th July 2012 to 6th August 2012
Workshop: Saturday 7th July 2012 from 2pm to 5pm

Lomography Gallery Store Berlin
Friedrichstraße 133
10117 Berlin
Full details on lomography.com

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Analogue photographers! Win €10,000 with Lomography Germany

by James Glazebrook

Zoë may be guilty of “going digital”, but I know we have some analogue photographers among our fans. Well, good for you, because Lomography Germany is giving away over €17,000 worth of prizes in its competition “Menschen und Berufe deiner Stadt”. All you have to do is snap and upload an analog or lomo photo of “people or professions in your (German) city”. Something like this:

Photo by wil6ka

Photo by wil6ka

You have until 10th May to upload your photo to Lomography.de. Then the photographers of the best 10 images in each of the competition’s 138 regions will be given a La Sardina Special Edition Camera. The 10 regional winners with the most votes on sponsor Das Telefonbuch’s Facebook Page win a trip to the exhibition in Cologne, where the overall winners of “Menschen und Berufe deiner Stadt“ will be honoured. There, the big prizes are dished out: €10,000 for the overall winner, €5,000 for second prize and €2,500 for third prize.

Pretty good huh? You can find full details about the competition (in German) on dastelefonbuch.lomography.de. And even if you’re not a photographer, or you’ve (gasp!) gone digital, you can check out the awesome photos already uploaded to the Berlin gallery. Enjoy.

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