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Meet Rita, the blow-up party doll that took 1970s Germany by storm
04.20.2017
08:13 am

Topics:
Advertising

Tags:
Germany
Pop Art
Soda pop


 
In 1969, Swiss advertising agency Gerstner, Gredinger + Kutter (GGK) launched an innovative campaign for Germany’s most popular soft drink: Sinalco Kola (distinct for its “sherbet powder” taste). It starred a brightly colored, life-sized blow-up party doll named Rita. With striking red hair, curly lashes, lush shapes, and a Sinalco Kola in hand, the campaign slogan boasted “Rita ist lieb,” which in English translates to “Rita is sweet.” “She will follow you everywhere: to parties, seaside holidays, or even into the bathtub. She does not smoke, does not drink, does not scold. Rita is all yours and she is not an expensive girl: she comes to you through the mail for 6,60 Deutsche Marks.” Yes, besides this colossal beauty’s presence in magazine advertisements, insert posters, TV ads, and in-store displays all over Germany, you could also have an inflatable Rita sent directly to your home for about $4 US.

Within two years of the campaign’s launch, Rita had quickly achieved cult status and helped Sinalco garner tons of attention, but more importantly, a unique personification and lasting impression that would help separate their brand from ubiquitous competitors such as Coca-Cola. In March of 1971, several inflated Rita’s were thrown from the roof of the Rhein-Main-Halle building during a trade fair as part of a spontaneous marketing stunt. Dozens of excited Wiesbaden residents ran through the streets with their Rita dolls, continuing their celebration in local pubs and train stations. By the mid-‘70s, every hippie in Germany owned this eye-catching piece of plastic pop art, and Rita’s became very common at public gatherings: from crowd surfing at outdoor music festivals to political protests. A male counterpart to Rita was created: a macho, muscular, spandex wearing man pathetically nicknamed “The Guy,” but Rita proved that her popularity could never be matched.

Rita blow-up party dolls can still be found floating around Germany, occasionally someone will sell one on eBay. She typically goes for about 70 euros, who can score me one?
 

 

 
More after the jump…

Posted by Doug Jones | Leave a comment
The ‘degenerate art’ of Rudolf Schlichter


A surrealist-style painting by German artist, Rudolf Schlichter.
 
At the age of 26, while he had been pursuing his studies at the Art Academy of Kunstakademie in Karlsruhe, German artist Rudolf Schlichter was drafted into the army. Following a successful hunger strike, Schlichter was dismissed from his duties and returned to the bustling, forward-thinking town of Karlsruhe. Schlichter didn’t stick around for long and soon set off for Berlin where he fell in with the Dada scene and became a communist.

Schlichter made a successful living in Berlin from his illustrations. He transitioned from Dada to the “Neue Saclichkeit” movement (or “New Objectivity”) that used realism to express skepticism related to current events. He quickly became one of the most influential and critically important contributors to this quasi-Expressionism. Within New Objectivity there were two additional artistic courses: The “Verists” were known for using portraiture as a vehicle for their hostility toward authority figures, affluence and the oppression of society. The works of the great Otto Dix played a large role in this sub-component of New Objectivity. The other was commonly referred to as “Magic Realists” who were in opposition to the German style of Expressionism. Probably the most notable Magic Realism artist was Georg Schrimpf whose work was a crucial part of New Objectivity. Now that we’ve got your mini subversive art lesson out of the way, here’s a bit more on Rudolf Schlichter whose work, though not initially, was reviled by the Nazis.

While Schlichter’s body of work is as vast as it is diverse, there were many recurrent points of interest and themes, especially erotic ones, in his paintings and illustrations. Often his subjects were comprised of various bohemian movers and shakers and other residents who were part of the vibrant counterculture of the streets of Berlin where he spent much of his time. In 1923 Schlichter provided 60 illustrations for an edition of Oscar Wilde’s The Ballad of Reading Gaol. At the end of the 1920s, Schlichter returned to being a practicing Catholic and would end up doing illustrations for various religious publications put out by the church including a youth-oriented magazine called Jungle Front. The illustrations in the magazine often cast a disparaging light on the politics of Adolf Hitler. Coincidently at the time of its publication, Schlichter also belonged to the exclusively German art organization run by the Third Reich, “Reichskammer der bildenden Künste” or the “Reich Chamber of Fine Arts” headed up by propagandist extraordinaire Joseph Goebbels. And as you might imagine the jab didn’t go unnoticed and Schlichter was promptly ousted. His work was removed from galleries and destroyed and Schlichter’s name was added to the “degenerate art” list kept by the Nazis. Which in my mind is always the right kind of list to be on, in any time period.

Though he would pass away at the age of 65, a little more than a decade prior to his death Schlichter produced many remarkable pieces of surrealistic style paintings. Which would lead to the artist being dubbed “the German Salvador Dali.” I’ve included a few of Schlichter’s surrealist works as well as a nice sampling of his erotica below. Which means much of what follows is NSFW.
 

 

“Blonde Enemy” 1922.
 

“Dada Roof Studio.”
 
More after the jump…

Posted by Cherrybomb | Leave a comment
Germans are funky? These bootylicious ‘funk fever’ compilations prove it!
03.06.2017
10:40 am

Topics:
Music

Tags:
Germany
funk


 
Can aside, Germans have the reputation of being stiff and methodical and, well—thoroughly unfunky. In spite of this, in 2007 and 2008, a small Hamburg-based label called Showup Records that boasts of excavating “dramatic, funkified rare-groove gems” released two compilations dedicated to showcasing some of the best German funk you’re likely to find anywhere. The two records were published under the title German Funk Fieber, and they contained all manner of “infectious rare grooves & Krauty Schlager wonders” from the years 1969 to 1978 (vol. 1, vol. 2). 

It becomes clear upon listening to these comps that Germany had its own kind of Wrecking Crew situation, a roster of expert studio musicians who could play damn near anything, as well as Doc Severinson types serving as bandleaders for TV and radio “orchestras,” and it was figures such as these who were responsible for introducing the new trends of American funk to German audiences. For instance, guitarist Sigi Schwab, here listed as “Siegfried,” was purportedly featured on 15,000 recordings during his lifetime, and Roland Kovac’s ORF Big Band was in the employ of the Austrian state-run television station. Similarly, James Last of his eponymous orchestra is said to have sold 200 million albums.

Listen to some funky Krauts after der jump…

Posted by Martin Schneider | Leave a comment
Ultra stylish lobby cards from the fashionable world of 1960s British cinema
02.22.2017
10:44 am

Topics:
Movies

Tags:
Germany
1960s
lobby cards
British Cinema


 
Enjoy this stellar collection of rare lobby cards that once graced movie theaters all over West Germany. Included in this collection are films from late ‘60s British cinema: comedic spy-fi Modesty Blaise (1966) starring Monica Vitti and Dirk Bogarde, The Spy with a Cold Nose (1966) starring Daliah Lavi, spy comedy film Casino Royale (1967) starring David Niven, Peter Sellers, and Woody Allen, Fathom (1967) starring Raquel Welch, Privilege (1967) starring Manfred Mann’s Paul Jones, The Day the Fish Came Out (1967) starring Candice Bergen, The Jokers (1967) starring Michael Crawford and Oliver Reed, Diamonds for Breakfast (1968) starring Marcello Mastroianni and Rita Tushingham, Duffy (1968) starring James Coburn, spy thriller Hammerhead (1968), swinging sex romp Here We Go Round the Mulberry Bush (1968), Oskar Werner drama Interlude (1968), Sebastian (1968) starring Dirk Bogarde and Susannah York, crime film The Strange Affair (1968) starring Michael York, space western Moon Zero Two (1969), and Two Gentlemen Sharing (1969) starring Judy Geeson.
 

Modesty Blaise (1966)
 

Modesty Blaise (1966)
 

Modesty Blaise (1966)
 

The Spy with a Cold Nose (1966)
 

The Spy with a Cold Nose (1966)
 
More after the jump…

Posted by Doug Jones | Leave a comment
‘Young Club’ winter 1972: 21 pages from this incredibly retro German mail-order catalogue
02.02.2017
08:58 am

Topics:
Advertising
Fashion

Tags:
Germany


 
Karstadt is the largest department store chain in Europe. Go retro shopping there in 1972 using your imagination and pages from this 700+ page Winter catalogue which somehow turned up at the Rose Bowl Flea Market. Did most European women wear wigs in the early 70s? That certainly seemed to be the case going by the evidence here.

This long-standing mail-order service run by Quelle was in operation until October 2009 before going out of business.

Jetzt kaufen, solange der Vorrat reicht! (Buy now, while supplies last!)
 

 

 

 
More pages after the jump…

Posted by Doug Jones | Leave a comment
Super-sexy-mini-flower-pop: The surreal & futuristic Afri-Cola ads of the late ‘60s


 
In the 1960s, German soft drink Afri-Cola (which first hit the shelves in 1931) was quickly losing to its competitors Coca-Cola and Pepsi. In 1968, the brand started searching for a new marketing campaign in an attempt to regain their image. They hired prolific commercial designer and photographer Charles Wilp from Düsseldorf. The wildly eccentric 36-year-old was rarely seen not wearing his trademark canary yellow jumpsuit and his provocative ideas that knew no creative limits would soon elevate him to a pop star level. 
 
While visiting the Marshall Space Center in Huntsville, Alabama, Wilp looked into the “Cryo Chamber,” (a tent where rockets are inspected at below zero temperatures), and through various iced plastic films saw a folding door with the image of a pin-up girl. He began envisioning the playmate floating around the room as if she were a ghost, and this gave birth to his groundbreaking ad concept.
 

 
Approximately 20 deliberately taboo TV spots and print ads with surreal-futuristic images began running all over Germany. These bizarre visuals included attractive nuns wearing makeup and eyeliner, lascivious stewardesses administering transfusions with cola instead of blood, an American soldier with a dove of peace, and a nude mustachioed male (the very first nudity in advertising history) weightlifting a soft drink bottle. Wilp’s risque ads, aimed to make viewers feel intoxicated without the use of drugs, were met with furious protest from ecclesiastical moralists who unintentionally helped the brand achieve exactly what they wanted: Afri-Cola became the cult drink of the flower power generation overnight and sales increased by a remarkable 30 percent.
 
Charles Wilp achieved this success by rejecting ad agency tools such as market research and media planning. Instead, he moved forward with his own strategy based on reversing visual perception. “If, for example, the market researchers say Afri-Cola is for young people, smiling young people should appear on the display. And if the media planners say Afri-Cola is a drink for hot days, then the ad should be in the magazines in the summer. I do the opposite: I photograph Afri-Cola with nuns and connect that with intoxication. I do not take a man with two girls, which would be common, but a girl with two men.” The breakthrough ads featured representatives of all different races, sexes, and levels of social strata.
 

 
Originally, Charles Wilp hired German-based American garage rock band The Monks to record a jingle, he thought their experimental sound and blasphemous image that mimicked the Catholic church would be a perfect fit for the controversial advertising campaign. Unfortunately, his plan didn’t work out. “The musicologists and the CEO couldn’t agree with me and the whole thing failed.” Charles Wilp explained in the 2008 Monks documentary The Transatlanic Feedback. “I performed my Afri-Cola music with 48 strings, 2 oboes, 2 harps, 4 timpani, classical instruments. And I created this ‘unreal’ sound which I always wanted to do and which I could have achieved faster with The Monks. Then I didn’t have to deal with the burden of conventions.” Wilp’s orchestrated Afri-Cola score was released on vinyl as a “super single.”
 
More after the jump…

Posted by Doug Jones | Leave a comment
Meet ‘The Fred Banana Combo’ Germany’s first new wave punks
12.02.2016
08:56 am

Topics:
Music
Punk

Tags:
Germany
1980s
new wave
The Fred Banana Combo


 
While the name of Düsseldorf band The Fred Banana Combo might sound more like something you’d come across in a bargain bin at your local record shop, don’t let their amusing moniker fool you as it appears the somewhat obscure band was responsible for releasing what has often been classified as “the very first independent punk/new wave single” to come out in Germany in 1978. The single contained two hot tracks, “No Destination Blues” and the in-your-face “Jerk off All Night Long.”

The band were one of many that played legendary Düsseldorf punk club the Ratinger Hof in the 80s, which also served as a rehearsal place for the band. The Ratinger Hof was a mecca for up and coming punk bands, many who gained a foothold thanks to the The Hof’s fertile breeding ground. Discovered by Krautrock king Conny Plank (who would produce the band’s first four records) Fred Banana’s sound, much like Plank’s, is rather unique. Purely punk at times FBC enjoyed infusing their sound up with new wave and power pop with most of their jams punching out in less than three minutes. The band’s first full-length album, 1981’s FBC was fast, loud and rowdy and when combined all eighteen tracks on the record clock in at just over 30 minutes. Like a lot of bands trying to cut their teeth FBC was fond of doing covers and have recorded a few great ones including Leonard Cohen’s “Bird on a Wire” and “Runaway” by Del Shannon. Both songs feature the fantastic vocals of FBC’s Nicolle Meyer—formerly the muse of influential French photographer and Man Ray protégé Guy Bourdin. The multi-talented Ms. Meyer also doubled as the timekeeper for FBC.
 

 
FBC were no more by the late 80s only to return with their original lineup in 2015 and a new record containing eleven fresh songs. One of them, the devastatingly cool “Splinters”  features the guest vocals of Sara Jay of Massive Attack fame. The Best of The Old Shit and The New Shit also contains twenty tracks from the band’s back catalog as well as a DVD featuring FBC appearances on Rockpalast. I’ve included two FBC live performances from 1980, their excellent cover of “Bird on a Wire,” plus the original song “I Don’t Know,” as well as “No Destination Blues” and “Splinters” for you to listen to below. I would have posted the masterfully weird “Jerk Off All Night Long” but it came along with lots of photos of topless ladies which while they pair perfectly with the songs title, was a little too visually stimulating to post here on a family publication like DM. You can “listen” to it here whenever you’re needing some alone time.

Much more after the jump…

Posted by Cherrybomb | Leave a comment
Strassenjungs: The ‘fake’ German punk rockers who toured with The Clash
11.23.2016
09:59 am

Topics:
Amusing
Music
Punk

Tags:
The Clash
Germany
1970s
Strassenjungs


German ‘punk’ band Strassenjungs circa 1980.
 
In 1977 two German producers decided to try to follow Malcolm McLaren’s success with the Sex Pistols by creating a “fake” punk rock band. The result would be a quad hailing from Frankfurt called Strassenjungs (which translates as “Street Boys”).

Axel Klopprogge and Eckehard Ziedrich pulled Strassenjungs together during a time when the punk scene was still in a formative state in Germany. Their timing, as far as Strassenjungs was concerned, was pretty perfect. It should have worked. But it didn’t.

Despite getting lucky enough tour rather extensively through Europe with The Clash in late 1977 (and according to the band’s official site Siouxise & The Banshees in 1980), Strassenjungs’ albums pretty much bombed as soon as they were released. Which is strange because they were seemingly laser-focused on being as “aggressive” as possible penning songs about teenage rebellion, sex, drugs and booze. While the combination of these things generally produce hit-making results, this was not the case for Strassenjungs until much later in their career. They were never truly accepted into the punk scene in Germany and in 1977 German musician Peter Hein accused the band of not being “punk” at all but “langhaarig, blödfressig, deutsch” or “long-haired, loud-mouthed Germans.”

If certain folklore about Strassenjungs is to be believed after a couple of failed records in 1982 the band’s debut record was added to the German Index (a censorship program) under the charge of “inciting crime and alcohol abuse” both of which seem pretty fucking punk rock to me. Sadly the dubious classification now prevented the album from being sold to minors. With all that working against them you’d think Strassenjungs might have called it quits, but they didn’t. Though they’ve been through various lineup changes over the decades the band still performs today with original bassist Nils Selzer. I’ve included some singles from Strassenjungs for you to consider below as well as a couple of photos of the band pretending to be punks back the day. If you dig what you hear in this post here’s a link pick up a “best of” compilation from the band Strassenfeger: Die Hit-Box! (best of) by Strassenjungs.
 

The goofy cover of Strassenjungs’ 1977 debut.
 
More after the jump…

Posted by Cherrybomb | Leave a comment
France Gall Sings About ‘Computer Dating’ In 1968
10.18.2016
09:12 am

Topics:
Amusing
Music
Science/Tech

Tags:
Germany
France Gall
Computers

Der Computer Nr.3 45 on Decca Records
 
In 1968, Serge Gainsbourg protégé France Gall participated in the televised song contest Deutscher Schlager-Wettbewerb (“The German Schlager Competition”) where hundreds of composers and lyricists from all over Europe were called upon to write a brand new hit song. A total of 495 titles were submitted, and only twelve songs were selected for the finals which were broadcast live on channel ZDF. Although she was French-born and famously known as a yé-yé singer, Gall did enjoy a successful career in Germany in the late ‘60s. With a little help from Werner Müller and Giorgio Moroder, she published 42 songs in German language between 1966 and 1972.

On July 4th, 1968, 21-year-old France Gall took the stage at the Berliner Philharmonie concert hall and performed a song titled “Der Computer Nr.3” live with the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra leaving 300 people and a panel of judges dramatically baffled over what in the world she was singing about: “Computer #3 searches the right boy for me. The computer knows the perfect woman for every man and happiness is drawn instantly from its files.” The song then suddenly takes an unexpected turn when it switches over to a vocoder German computer voice which pre-dates the formation of Kraftwerk “22 Jahre, schwarze Haare, von Beruf Vertreter, Kennzeichen: Geld wie Heu” (Age: 22 years, black hair, professional representative, features: money galore)

The song (credited to the biggest hit-making duo in Germany at the time: music producer Christian Bruhn and lyricist Georg Buschor) then takes yet another completely unexpected turn as it dips into a Beatles cover for a brief moment before diving right back into the subject matter at hand. “Lange war ich einsam, heut’ bin ich verliebt, und nur darum ist das so, weil es die Technik und die Wissenschaft und Elektronengehirne gibbet.” Translated into English, France Gall is singing perfectly to the “Eight Days A Week” melody “Ohh I need your love babe, yes you know it’s true, that’s only because the technology and science and electrons are there.”

Cut to the audience to see hundreds of upper-class post-war Germans staring blankly, emotionless, and reactionless at the very first song ever written about computer dating. While personal computers and the internet were still years away, computer dating was an actual trend in the late ‘60s being targeted to lonely hearts all over the world by way of magazine advertorials. Participants would submit their vital stats, a punchcard-plotted questionnaire, and a personal check in the amount of $3-5 in an old-fashioned stamp-licked envelope. Then they waited patiently (usually several weeks or months) while an IBM mainframe the size of an entire room crunched the numbers on their personalities, intelligence, and preferences (no photos were involved).

Keep reading after the jump…

Posted by Doug Jones | Leave a comment
‘Space Patrol – The Fantastic Adventures of the Spaceship Orion’: German TV’s first sci-fi show
07.15.2016
03:24 pm

Topics:
Television

Tags:
Germany
Spaceship Orion


 
The 1966 German TV sci-fi cult classic Raumpatrouille – Die phantastischen Abenteuer des Raumschiffes Orion (literal translation: “Space Patrol – The Fantastic Adventures of the Spaceship Orion”) was the very first German science fiction television series, predating even Star Trek’s appearance there by six years. The two shows were developed concurrently, with the German series airing its first episode just nine days after the American program’s first appearance and they have several (accidental) similarities. The Spaceship Orion is supposed to be the fastest flying saucer ever invented. The craft’s commander is a dashing, impulsive American and the plot involves a brewing war with an alien race called—get this—“The Frogs”! (Scriptwriters must’ve been Brits, jah?). Only seven episodes of Raumpatrouille – Die phantastischen Abenteuer des Raumschiffes Orion were produced.
 

 
The voice-over intro is similar to Star Trek’s:

“What may sound like a fairy tale today may be tomorrow’s reality. This is a fairy tale from the day after tomorrow: There are no more nations. There is only mankind and its colonies in space. People have settled on faraway stars. The ocean floor has been made habitable. At speed still unimaginable today, space vessels are rushing through our Milky Way. One of these vessels is the ORION, a minuscule part of a gigantic security system protecting the Earth from threats from outer space. Let’s accompany the ORION and her crew on their patrol at the edge of infinity.”

 
More after the jump…

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
Germany issues commemorative stamp collection in honor of Lemmy Kilmister
05.13.2016
01:13 pm

Topics:
Heroes
Music

Tags:
Germany
Lemmy Kilmister
Motörhead
stamps


One of the five commemorative stamps issued by the German postal service honoring the late Motörhead frontman, Lemmy Kilmister.
 
If you have friends or relatives in Germany, it’s time to call out a favor as the German postal service has just released a collection of stamps honoring the late Lemmy Kilmister.

There are a total of five different images of the iconic Motörhead leader in the book of ten stamps, that will be available for sale starting on May 17th through June 17th, 2016. Sales of the Lemmy stamps will be limited to only 7777 books (an homage to Lemmy’s “lucky seven”), and will run you about eleven bucks (US) over here. But again, you can only purchase them if you’re actually in Germany. So get going on locating your long-lost German Aunt or Uncle as I’m 100% sure these stamps will sell out swiftly. 
 

 
More after the jump…

Posted by Cherrybomb | Leave a comment
Siouxsie & The Banshees, Kraftwerk, Suzi Quatro, AC/DC & more on German TV show ‘Rockpop’

AC/DC rehersing with Cheap Trick guitarist Rick Nielson for German music TV show
AC/DC jamming with Cheap Trick guitarist Rick Nielson during rehearsals for the German music TV show “‘Rockpop’ in 1979. You can see footage of Cheap Trick on ‘Rockpop,’here.
 
Today I have the perfect remedy for it sadly being Monday—again!—some incredible footage of bands such as Siouxsie & The Banshees, Kraftwerk, AC/DC, Suzi Quatro, and a number of other notable musical acts performing on German music television’s Rockpop in the late 70s.
 
Suzi Quatro performing on
Suzi Quatro performing on “Rockpop” in 1979
 
Rockpop was aired on German public-service television broadcaster, ZDF (Zweites Deutsches Fernsehen) starting in 1978 and running until 1982. The show would feature several performances from its diverse selection of musical guests on each episode. Some even performed live, not just miming along to their tunes, like AC/DC, Suzi Quatro, and Wayne County & the Electric Chairs did in 1979.

I’m especially fond of the clip of Siouxsie & The Banshees performing their 1978 single, “Hong Kong Garden” on Rockpop in 1979 (during which a 22-year-old Siouxsie Sioux does a sweet punk rock aerobic routine on stage) to a virtually motionless, rather serious-looking studio audience. In addition to the bands I’ve already mentioned in this post, I’ve also included clips from Rockpop featuring heavy metal heroes like the Scorpions and Judas Priest because the crystal clear footage (in most cases), is just too good not to share.
 

AC/DC performing “Highway to Hell” live on ‘Rockpop’ live in September of 1979.
 
More from ‘Rockpop’ after the jump…

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The far-out sci-fi costume parties of the Bauhaus school in the 1920s
12.31.2015
10:25 am

Topics:
Art
Design

Tags:
Germany
Bauhaus school
costume parties

Bauhaus school costume party, 1920s
Bauhaus school costume party, 1920s
 
As we get ready to tell yet another year to kiss our collective asses on its way out the door, that also means it’s almost time for that annual liver-killing bacchanal known as New Year’s Eve. But no matter what you have planned this year, I’m fairly certain that your party will not even come close to the costume parties thrown by students and teachers of Germany’s Bauhaus school back in the 1920s.
 
Bauhaus costume party, 1920s
 
Sadly, there are not many surviving photographs of the costumed shindigs thrown at the school, which was founded by the revered German architect Walter Adolph Georg Gropius. It has been said that attendees of the costume parties took the preparation of their costumes as seriously (if not more so) as their studies at the school and the results were a spellbinding array of imagery created by the upper crust vanguard that made up Bauhaus’ academic population. Such as Russian abstract painter, Wassily Kandinsky and the great painter, Paul Klee both of whom taught classes at Bauhaus for approximately a decade starting in the very early 1920s.
 
Bauhaus costumes by Bauhaus mural and sculpture department head and later theater workshop director, Oskar Schlemmer (1925)
Bauhaus costumes by Bauhaus Mural and Sculpture Department head (and later Theater Workshop director), Oskar Schlemmer (1925)
 
As for the the school itself, Gropius was very specific about the type of students he and his free-wheeling, arty-administration wanted roaming the halls of Bauhaus. As detailed in his 1925 essay, “Life at the Bauhaus,” then student and Hungarian architect, Farkas Ferenc Molnár, described the very specific “party people” attributes a prospective student should possess before deciding to pursue their studies the school:

For someone to be admitted to the Bauhaus workshops he or she must not only know how to work but also how to live. Education and training are not as essential requirements as a lively, alert temperament, [464] a flexible body, and an inventive mind.  Nightlife at the Bauhaus claims the same importance as daytime activities.  One must know how to dance.  In Itten’s apt phrase: locker sein [loosen up].

I don’t know about you, but if this was a part of my former higher education institution’s “mission statement,” I probably would have stuck around longer. As many photos of the fantastical Bauhaus costume parties that I could dig up follow.
 
Bauhaus costume party, 1920s
 
Bauhaus costume party, 1920s
 
Bauhaus costume party, 1920s
 
More after the jump…

Posted by Cherrybomb | Leave a comment
Amazon sells baseball bats as plus-sized sex toys in Germany
03.17.2014
10:08 am

Topics:
Sex
Sports

Tags:
Germany

Baseball bat
“The Berlin Slugger”
 
It’s clear that there aren’t very many baseball fans in Germany. It’s a little less clear whether these Amazon.de listings for “Bondage Fetish Mega Dildos” (seems like German English have a common vocabulary for such items) are intended to be funny or not. It doesn’t really matter—because they are pretty funny!

The wooden bat costs 25.95 Euros (about $36), while the aluminum model costs 34.95 Euros (about $48.50). This pricing makes sense to me. After all, the aluminum model might be cold to the touch but is almost certainly more pleasant to use—that’s not even taking into account the splinter factor.
 
Baseball bat
“The Weisendorf Wanger”
 
The company listed as the supplier is called “FEIHOFF sarl,” and if you look at their other offerings on Amazon.de, it’s clear what they specialize in.

Both products feature the term “Basballschlägel” (baseball bat) in the description, so at least we can say with confidence that they do know what’s going on here. Both products also use the phrase—I love this—“Bondage für Kenner,” which translates as “Bondage for Experts.” Actually, here is a list of English words that can serve as accurate translations for “Kenner”: “connoisseur, maven, adept, fancier, appreciator, authority, classicist, dabster, expert, cognoscenti, sophisticate.” You get the point: beginners, do tread carefully!

Ordinarily we at DM like to put a video at the bottom of the post, but I think we’ll pass this time. If you’re curious to see this ... er… “implement” in action, well, Google is your friend!
 
via Das Kraftfuttermischwerk

Posted by Martin Schneider | Leave a comment
Gorgeous color film footage of turn of the century Berlin
01.24.2014
04:11 pm

Topics:
History

Tags:
Germany
Berlin

Berlin
 
Absolutely stunning. The footage below is primarily of Berlin around 1900, though it contains a bit of Munich and some shots from 1914, as well. Around the turn of the century, Berlin was experiencing a population boom, mainly due to migration. Massive, rapid industrialization created the beehive of activity you see below, which inspired Mark Twain to call Berlin, “the Chicago of Europe.”

There’s an amazing array of life seen in such a short clip, from political and military pomp and circumstance to children playing to men drinking beer. Beyond the hustle and bustle and beautiful architecture, it’s the fascination of the subjects with the camera that really drew me in. Their curiosity gives the film a very intimate view of life at the time.
 

 
Via The Wall Breakers

Posted by Amber Frost | Leave a comment
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