August 4th, 2008


EU knitting

Not sure how it fits into the frame of yesterday's debate, but Joe, Emma, Hisae and I had an exemplary Berlin Sunday yesterday, full of interesting sounds and colours. It started with an hour or so of live mixing of field recordings, at an event called Throw Away Your Radio, Get A New One, held just around the corner from our flat.

We were the only audience for the first hour of a projected four-hour "sonic wanderung" by Adam Thomas, James Edmonds, Kim Laugs, and Rinus Van Alebeek. The improvisation with four separate sound sources (field recordings, archive material, but also an old mechanical record player miked at strategic places) was soothing, blending with the taste of vanilla milk and the reassuringly funky-fusty decor of O Tannenbaum, an alternative workspace and occasional junkshop on Pflügerstrasse, run by Dutch artists. At one moment fire engines seemed to race distantly through the room. "Is that us, or is that outside?" cried Rinus, and ran to the door. "It's us!" he said. The fire was a field recording.

After that we headed (via vegan burgers at Mauerpark) to Strickzirkel #7, the conceptual knitting circle up at Rüdiger Schlömer's flat in Prenzlauer Berg. The Strickzirkel was the subject of my first Post-Materialist piece.

Conceptual knitting is a really relaxing way to spend a Sunday afternoon, and somehow its combination of the ultra-traditional with the avant garde is very Berlin. Or do I mean very Japanese-Bubble Berlin? In the evening, feeling like living national treasures, we headed off to a nearby Japanese restaurant.