1. The place
For some reason, I seem to end up in Berlin during some form of emotional turmoil every time. There’s always a breakup/fight or other form of romantic entanglement that puts me in a very vulnerable, raw emotional state; this usually results in a sort of heightened state of consciousness, a natural high if you will.
Tuesday night, I was finally heading to the opening night of 3hd, a young Berlin festival channeling both the conceptual activism of Judith Butler and the visual appeal of a good Tumblr.
That night, when I finally got to the right area, I was faced with a different sort of puzzle: an intricate housing maze of stairs, balconies, neon signs and hip people looking as lost as I was. We formed a rag-tag exponentially growing group of beanie-wearers, in search for the gallery entrance.
Making our way through the narrow balcony overlooking the street, a very familiar sight came into view - the overflowing gallery crowd making their own party outside the venue.
Whites over whites over skins are covered in velvet. Synthetic capes under Nike caps are fixed over heads shaved near ears.
Vierte Welt hosts the top 10 best socks ever which are peaking from the most wanted and timeless shoes of the 00s. Music is everywhere, made out of everything, coming out of whatever.
Flashes of light and loud gabber music were coming from the space, a rather appropriate soundtrack for the art punters materialized from a documentary on ‘90s Dutch raves.
Welcome to the temporary home of post-internet art. 3hd, the hybrid festival taking place in HAU2, OHM and Vierte Welt, usual homes of the independent, free-minded, different.
3hd is the “place” where we found out that internet got beyond our computers because, for the first time, we saw the internet is us. 3hd brings together these counter-intuitive artistic anchors and a lot of progressive, inclusive, smart and ahead of its time thinking. Digitally delightful sensed with senses.
The second edition of 3hd festival, opened the debate with artistic narration tools through presentations, panel discussions, exhibitions, music and video releases. It also questioned pessimistic presumptions about the future. There is nothing left but the future? was the core question to which collectives and individuals answered with examples and practices such as interactive participatory activism, exploratory artistic boundaries, non-traditional academic research methods, the political voice of musical performances with non-binary attitude to their work.
The specific visual representation of what we call now vaporwave plus the familiarity of the synths and 140bps trap music twists to pop culture’s already iconic lyrics, caught us in this selective communication bubble. At a closer look, one detailed gaze away, this hyper-contemporary version of low-brow imagery has behind it strong and aware voices criticizing courageously sexuality matters, violence, race, political views, the frivolity of being and lack of act.