Monday, 29 August 2011

An August Pastiche

The summer has been too short, hasn't it? Despite cold weather and too much rain, the feeling of having been cheated out of their favourite season has failed to dampen the spirits of Berlin's populace. It has eagerly arisen to the challenge of packing an entire season's worth of action into the few and far-between balmy days the city has seen, this year.

Left: dude assumes unbear-ably cool pose while watching the Fuck Parade proceed down Stralauer Allee. Taken Saturday August 20th.

ight: stage-dancer at Rummelsburg Berlin, Fly BerMuDa warm-up party, Sunday August 21st.

So what do Berliners do in the hot weather? First of foremost, they party. Secondly, they demonstrate. The Fuck Parade on August 20th mixed both demonstration and party: each of its seemingly-endless procession of floats were festooned with anti-Nazi messages, while blasting adrenalin pumping techno and gabba.

Berliners also like to visit the city's many natural and man-made beaches (below). Again, partying and techno feature prominently.
Above and below: hats, sunglasses and fans were the accessories de jour at the Fly BerMuDa warm-up party in Rummelsburg Berlin, a beach club in the east end of Berlin. Photo taken Sunday August 21st.
Beach too full? Then head out to one of the city's many natural lakes, like these fishermen at Butzowsee (below). Taken August 12th.

Fourth, they like to get creative with their surroundings - whether that means working in their garden, landscaping in their allotments or, for the more artistically inclined, decorating the city's walls with stencils and grafitti. I used the good weather to indulge my hobby of photographing street art and, in one case, the street artists too.

Below: An artist paints the wall of RAW Tempel in Revaler Strasse. Photo taken August 25th
Above: Random stencil painting on Kaiserdamm, Charlottenburg. Photo taken August 24th.
Above and below: stencil and paint meld into surreal pastiches at Oeberbaumbruecke and Schlesiche Strasse. Taken August 26th.
Finally, if they are anything like me then the average Berliner likes to explore and seek out the many hidden gems in Berlin's backstreets, like this absinthe bar in Hackescher Markt (above). Sometimes those gems are hidden right in plain view, like this art studio/gallery in Oeberbambrucke (below). I must have passed it a hundred times before a sleeping cat in its window finally caught my eye...
Now that the cold grey skies have returned to rain on everybody's parade, I have plenty of time to sit indoors and reflect on the summer that nearly was. Luckily for me, I also have plenty of photos to remember the good days by. Thank heavens for that.
Above: A musical summer sunset, taken at Warschauer Strasse U-Bahn station during the annual Fuck Parade.

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