Wednesday, 30 April 2014

Mittwoch: Carolin Saage and the legend of Bar 25

All images by Carolin Saage. Book available to buy here.

"A fantastic playground...

                 ...a green oasis"
If you've never visited Berlin before, you might like to try this brief mental exercise. Conjure up the wildest night out you've ever had. Multiply by 10. Chuck in some face paints,  and a fancy-ass hat. Add a crate 80 cent beers and a couple of sprinkles of various naughty salts to the mix. Turn up the volume and colour saturation, minus the part where you vomit on your own shoulder, and replace with a glowing vermilion sunrise.

When Berliners party, they party hard. And in many minds, the biggest, hardest party of them all was at Bar 25.

Bar 25 was located in Friedrichshain, by the river Spree. Since its opening in the early noughties it evolved rapidly from its original bleak, concrete state to a secluded oasis of leafy trees, spa baths, swimming pools, tree swings and really fucking loud music. This is where Berlin's techno heroes came to let loose - a party Valhalla, if you like.


Bar 25 was notorious for its strict 'no photography' policy, and during the years they were open only allowed one official photographer to document the development and hedonism of the infamous party hotspot. Carolin Saage spent almost seven years capturing the mud fights, confetti baths, pool dives and colourful visitors of the weekend-long parties. After exhibiting a selection of her Bar 25 photographs in the city, her book 25/7 was published last year. It's a vibrant, intimate and at times hilarious window into a whole new party dimension, albeit one that is sadly no more.

Bar 25 finally closed its saloon doors in 2010 after a lengthy struggle to keep it open. Their closing party lasted a full five days, and the legendary goings-on are still spoken about in an almost reverential tone by those who went, and those who will forever regret not going.

Bis bald,

Betti Baudelaire xxx

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