“BLAKBOX” – An ode to the queer, underground, Berlin rave scene. 19.04.19
A hybrid stimulation system curated by the Athenian cultural platform B L N K in collaboration with the Berlin-based collective GENDERLICH. A tribute to the circumstances under which underground communities have been shaping for the past three decades, making Berlin a haven for anyone that doesn’t follow society’s strict regulations.
Being raised in times of a declining political and economic system, both the founding members and the artists of the two collectives, have been trying to reclaim their place in society through self-organized art events, illegal raves, video games, performances, installations etc. Through the collectives’ multimedia approaches, their guests have been exposed to issues such as taboos, norms or privileges; encouraged to approach them through a self-directing interaction. “BLAKBOX” is a composition of miscellaneous elements such as visuals, impromptu participatory & staged performances from the collectives’ resident artists and electrifying music sets from some of Athens’s and Berlin’s most charismatic, underground DJs. Along with the anticipated engagement of the audience, they create a hidden-from-the-world “algorithm”. The simultaneous co-existence of those elements, set aside from the norms of our society, aims to intrigue perception and encourages us to question deep-rooted conceptions of human behavior; to reinvent our role in a community based on freedom and untamed imagination.
As Alex Aravantinos – founding member of B L N K – stated, “Since a very young age we noticed the difference between people inside and outside of clubs. With “BLAKBOX” we attempt to understand what really happens inside those venues and how this unregulated freedom we experience there impact our lives until after we head back home. Berlin’s 3-decade-long history of revolutionizing self-expression through clubbing gave us no other option rather than debut this event here.” The name “BLAKBOX” is a clear reference to black boxes in science, Ion Kazantzidis – artistic director of the project – explains. “Black boxes are devices, systems, or objects which can be viewed in terms of their inputs and outputs without any knowledge of their internal workings. By associating the club to a black box, we try to emphasize on the internal functions of that venue. We put our guests to the contradictory position of examining the input and output of the “BLAKBOX” while being in its core. All guests become part of this closed system”.
BOSSANDMONACOis a DJ duo and residents of the Genderlich collective.
Andre Fauis a DJ / Visual Artist and founding member of the GENDERLICH collective. Andre has participated in some of Berlin’s most prominent, queer-liberating events such as Gday (Golosa), Trashera Creative Kollektiv,Pornceptual and Whole Festival.
Linn Ihasseis a Berlin-based physical theatre actress. Her art is motivated by the different unfairness in the society, touching themes as female status and sexuality, racism and body taboos. She often uses a grotesque and clownesque approach to present her material and confront the audience with expressive feelings and Grimm movements on stage.
Phoenix Chase-Meares is a multidisciplined dancer and uses this to create an ultimate dance hybrid. Their work is thought-provoking and innovative, drawing on their own life experiences to create works that catch the viewers attention in an unapologetically loud and provocative fashion. Phoenix completed their training at the London Studio Centre.
Eremus is a queer multimedia artist, a DJ and an architect. His work explores the potential dangers and/or possibilities of informational technologies, surveillance strategies and immersive cyberspaces, as well as the relationship between queer identity and digitally augmented realities. He usually creates atmospheres of extreme alienation, in an attempt to simulate the lived experience of inhabiting a marginalized meat platform. His videos and installations have been exhibited in DIY exhibitions and events, as well as in the Athens Digital Arts Festival (2016, 2017), the W:OW Festival (WOW.08), the KFFK (Short Film Festival Cologne) and the Athens Museum of Queer Arts, among others. He currently lives in Athens and studied at the Athens School of Fine Arts.
B L N K is a cultural platform dedicated to the curation, production, and creation of experimental artistic events. As an alternative to the competitive individualism of today’s society, B L N K sets out to work collectively, sharing ideas and knowledge and developing projects through a free debate based on cooperation and exchange. Without each other, we are not as rich in diversity, contents, or skills.
GENDERLICH is a newly founded collective that focuses on creating space for gender-transcendent people in Berlin’s landscape. Its dance-floors are vibrational energy centres. Love is the energy and music is the healing, balancing and aligning the mind, body, and soul. The sense of togetherness towards love, dance, and party experiences allow our minds to be free.