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After the Fall - Berlin 1990/2000

1/18 OCTOBER 2015: Red Gallery ,1-3 Rivington Street, London EC2A 3DT

A Red Gallery Exhibition in collaboration between Ernesto Leal (ourhistory/red gallery) and Dimitri Heggeman (tresor)

After the Fall captures a singular period, when one of the biggest political changes in recent history coincided with the arrival of a new musical movement. Post-Wall Berlin was the perfect breeding ground for the youth culture that would dominate the 90s and change the way we look at the city forever – Techno!

The archive includes photographs by German artists Ben de Biel and Tilman Brembs, East Berlin was full of disused spaces and abandoned buildings, just waiting to come to life again. It wasn’t clear who owned these warehouses and deserted office blocks, which led the techno pioneers to take over and set up shop.

Clubs, galleries, squats, studios and workshops soon sprung up – only to disappear again a few weeks later. Within a short space of time Berlin had become the focal point of a new culture, attracting enthusiastic followers from all over the world to clubs such as ‘Tresor’ and ‘E-Werk’. 

Among those early techno aficionados were writers, artists, photographers, musicians and fashion designers. Techno quickly developed into a lifestyle and mass movement, finding its most exhilarating expression in the Love Parade.

About the artists

German Photographers Ben de Biel (former owner of renowned Berlin-based club Maria) and Tilman Brembs (creative force behind Zeitmaschine, his online archive of analogue photos of the early rave days) have both witnessed Berlin’s slow transformation from divided city into the bustling nightlife capital it is today. As photographers as well as ravers and activists they lived at the centre of this cultural explosion. 

While Ben de Biel’s grainy black-and-white photographs capture the city’s often interchangeable squat and art scene, Tilman Brembs’ works on the other hand feature the optimistic madness of the early rave and club scene in his colourful photos.