This Season we forge a monument to lust in four varied portraits. We delight in celebrating the lust for life and explore all its facets. From hedonistic ecstasy to euphoric flow states, we follow personalities who live and enjoy their very own lust for life. Personalities who express themselves without compromise. Freed from the constraints of rigid patterns and trodden paths! Autumn/Winter 2022 is about the courage to find your personal definition of inner and outer beauty.
Tess Völker and Boston Gallacher have been dancing at the world-famous Nederlands Dans Theater (NDT) in The Hague for several years now. The duo is completely absorbed in the intuitive states of flow they experience while dancing.
In modern dance, the body is more than just a tool to follow choreography. It becomes a resonance space for dancers and spectators alike. The connection to the environment is created using facial expressions, gestures, movement and music.
A life in dance.
Tess Völker is the up-and-coming talent for modern dance. The young woman was born in San Francisco in 1997 and studied jazz, modern dance and ballet at the renowned The Rock School in Philadelphia, Walnut Hill School for the Arts in Natick and the Joffrey
Ballet Chicago. She has already danced at the Ballett Dortmund and at the NDT II for dancers aged 17 to 22. In the meantime, she belongs to the main NDT I company. She says about dance and music: “Music is the closest thing to magic in our world. Dance is my way to connect with that.”
Dance is a never-ending quest for Tess: “I feel the paradox of control as a dancer: I try to control my body but always come up against my own limits – because I only have this one body. Testing those limits is addictive.”
There is a lustful experience hidden in this, because: “There are rare moments in dancing when I feel so connected to what I’m doing, to who I am, to the music. The feeling of being at one with myself, with the music, with the space, just riding the wave of the
situation, is completely indescribable. You can scarcely put it into words. That is literally the reason why I dance. A completely new way of communication.”
Constantly hovering between fear and lust.
Boston Gallacher also dances at the NDT. Boston was born in Scotland in 1996 and studied at the Dance School of Scotland and the Rambert School of Ballet and Contemporary Dance in Twickenham. Boston also processes his quest for the authentic self in dance: “I am always striving to understand who I am. Dance lets me do just that.” Dance, for him, is always a borderline experience between fear and lust.
Limits to freedom.
When Tess and Boston talk about their work, you can feel the depth of their desire to express themselves. To do it just that little bit better next time. In the process, both repeatedly come up against the limits of their bodies. The human imagination knows no limits. Anything is possible. But the body only has a certain number of muscles and joints that a dancer can use.
“I’m always looking for more,” says Boston. In the process, Boston regularly experiences moments that he describes as lust: “This unquenchable need for something, this is exactly my relationship to dance. Insatiable, never fully satisfied. When I dance though, I feel free.”
The Berlin Braves are not just any sports club. They give young people in professional and amateur sport backing and support with their collaborative and holistic approach – because you can sometimes get lost without a community, especially in the everpulsating vibrancy of Berlin.
The Berlin Braves are based in the heart of Berlin – and this is the perfect location to reflect the club’s attitude. “At the heart of what we do is, of course, our love of sport,” explains Simon Dube Paul, member of the board of Berlin Braves. “We all love the feeling that sport gives us.” The club has specialised in the disciplines of running and basketball and has already enjoyed some success here. Our sporting goal is for our basketball teams to reach the second national league. More than anything,
however, the Berlin Braves are also a place to go for people of all kinds: “We integrate everyone and champion diversity – as a community we can only benefit from this.”
Community – so that you can rely on each other.
Member of the board Arina Vahdati is also proud of the community that has evolved over the years. There is a huge amount of confidence in all the members: “It takes a lot to be ready to go week in, week out. We all have our own baggage – but we are all still there every week and can always rely on each other.” The Berlin Braves know how important togetherness is – not only in sporting competition, but also in friendships. That is why the club adopts the progressive approach it does, wanting nothing more than to enable its members to live a fulfilled and positive life.
“Sport teaches you lessons for life. You learn to persevere and fail, you also experience frustration,” says Arina. That is why sport is extremely important, especially for young people. The club wants to prepare kids for the future, socialising them through sport. Friendship is very important – you support each other wherever you can, particularly as the most diverse people come together here. The Braves strive to strengthen Berlin’s culture and reflect the city’s identity. Recognising, respecting and upholding diversity. That’s why the Braves love spending time together beyond playing sports: successes and togetherness are celebrated at joint events. Joie de vivre is also part of sport. It is extremely important to come together again, not least after the pandemic.
Lust for life through sport.
Sport plays an important role for everyone. “For me, sport is synonymous with life – if I don’t do sport, I feel right off track,” says Arina. She sees it as a chance to give something back to her body, “because it does so much for me every day.” The euphoria she experiences in basketball never wears off. “No matter what happens on the court, my lust for the sport is constant.”
DRYKORN for the Berlin Braves.
DRYKORN supports people as they make it happen for themselves. That’s why DRYKORN is a proud partner and sponsor of the Berlin Braves. „We believe in the holistic philosophy of the club and want to support it in its goals.” Both sides look forward to a long-lasting, appreciative partnership.
Isis Maria Niedecken is an artist, model and mother living in Berlin.
Her son plays a significant part in her art – as do positive feelings, joie de vivre and memories.
When she puts her son to bed, Isis Maria Niedecken could simply lie down with him – but that’s not what she does. She uses her son’s daily nap to reach for bright colours. She paints on various sized canvases; pictures that stand for joie de vivre.
Making life more colourful. And more beautiful.
“Actually, it all started with me wanting to use my son’s nap time to relax but also do something productive at the same time.” Painting on canvas relaxes her, allowing her to forget the stresses and worries of the day. “When painting, there is a creative flow. The feeling of creating something beautiful with my own hands gives me lots of energy and a good feeling.” The beautiful, relaxing, inspiring also comes through in her pictures. Isis Maria Niedecken’s style is distinctive with its childlike motifs in bright colours.
Art in everyday life. Everyday life in art.
Everyday life plays a major role in Isis Maria’s art. She invites viewers to look for beauty anew every day in everyday motifs such as water glasses, shrimps and lemon slices: “Matisse said: ‘There are flowers everywhere if you just open your eyes to them.’ I think this reflects my attitude to life very well.”
When you look at Isis Maria’s pictures, you can’t fail to feel in a better mood. That is precisely her goal: “I want my paintings to be a happy place. Joie de vivre plays a very big role in this.” She draws on the feeling of lightness from her memories of summer holidays and her childhood.
“My son’s perspective is also very important to me though. The way he navigates his way through the world and perceives it. There is a lot of beauty and inspiration here. I try to pick up on that feeling in my paintings.“
LUST for LIFE as a motto for life.
Isis Maria sees her art as a way to focus on positive things every day. In fact, she even sees it as her duty: “As a mother, I am a role model – of course that has changed me! I realised that I need to be my authentic self to be a good
mother.” The results of this?
“Being a mother and an artist has changed my life. I listen much more to my intuition and let my lust for life guide what I do.”
Brazilian Chris Phillips launched an internet platform for erotic photography called Pornceptual in 2012. A year later, he founded an artists’ collective under the same name with Eric Phillips, Raugel Fedato and Diego García. Today, Pornceptual is an international brand for sex-positive parties. This also includes a magazine for erotic photography, videos and an online shop for fetish clothing.
“Mainstream pornography has always disappointed me,” says Chris Phillips. “Everything about it is artificial and not very inclusive.” The queer photographer decided to combine pornography with an artistic approach – hence the name Pornceptual.
„We want to prove that pornography can be respectful, intimate and artistic while challenging the usual pornographic labels: can art succeed where porn fails – actually turning us on?”
Away from the taboo. Towards sexual freedom.
“I come from a very conservative background, which I found restrictive. For me, Pornceptual is the opportunity to live out my sexual freedom.” That is sometimes challenging and overwhelming, but: “I just couldn’t live any other way. A life without freedom makes no sense to me.” This is exactly what Pornceptual aims to achieve: sexual freedom and a place of belonging cannot be taken for granted, particularly so for queer people. So seeing the sex-positive parties as a mere distraction from everyday life does not do Pornceptual justice: “We are a queer community that not only celebrates, but sees ourselves as a chosen family – especially when we have experienced
rejection in our biological families.”
Everyone has the opportunity to live out their sexuality at Pornceptual – far removed from social norms and constraints.
Freedom and belonging – also as partners.
Chris Phillips’ long-time partner Malte Bossen also knows and loves freedom. The two met at a party a few years ago and have been living in an open relationship ever since. They do try out new things with others, but only together: “We don‘t believe in
monogamy, but we are exclusive to each other.”
The best feeling ever.
Chris and Malte often talk about how important it is for them to feel free. They want to encourage everyone to ask themselves what the best possible life can look like for themselves. This also means not judging others: “People who don’t judge others are also happier with themselves – you should focus on your own life, not other people’s.” Everyone should be free to assess their own lives and consider where they would like more freedom.
“Lust for me is not just about sex. But passion, no matter for what. Everyone should be able to do what they want.” Because feeling free just feels great. Malte and Chris enjoy their lifestyle and don’t care about anyone else’s opinion. And that is
exactly what they wish for everyone else.