The Goethe-Institut Australia Launches Urban Subcultures 2016

8 March 2016 | 4:53 pm | Staff Writer

Music & art in Berlin - the wild 1980s and their legacy

More Gudrun Gut More Gudrun Gut

The Goethe-Institut Australia is launching its 2016 Urban Subcultures program - which will showcase of the intense progression and cultural activity of subcultures in Berlin and across Germany in both the '80s and modern times.

Berlin has been a transformative landscape for all manner of artists - international creatives like Nick Cave, David Bowie, Iggy Pop and Brian Eno all having made pilgrimages to the city during their careers - and Urban Subcultures shares the eclectic fruit brought forth from that fertile soil through a curated series of exhibitions, concerts, artist talks and film screenings.

The program's flagship is the international touring exhibition Geniale Dilletanten - a phrase that was synonymous with the artistic upheaval of '80s Germany - which will be held at Ambush Gallery in Sydney. It is a comprehensive dissection of Germany's underground cultures of that era, using a rich well of video and photographic material, films, audio, magazines, posters and other artefacts to reveal unexplored facets of the daring scene that centred around and produced Einsturzende Neubauten, Palais Schaumburg, Deutsch Amerikanische Freundschaft and many other talented innovators. 

One of the original members of the Geniale Dilletanten movement, Gudrun Gut - founding member of Malaria!, Mania D and Einsturzende Neubauten - has been invited to Australia as part of the program and will perform at the exhibition in Sydney as well as at additional shows in Melbourne and Brisbane.

Musician and producer Mick Harvey will also take part. As a core member of The Birthday Party and The Bad Seeds Harvey was a key figure in the '80s scene and will hold a discussion following the screening of B-Movie: Lust And Sound In West Berlin. The film is half documentary and half producer Mark Reeder's personal account the times - using archival footage of Joy Division, Nick Cave, Nena and others to bring the scene to the screen.

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Sven Marquardt is also contributing to Urban Subcultures, presenting two collections of his dark and captivating photography - one in Sydney and one in Melbourne.

For more information see theGuide.