Flyer Soziotope

A Treasure Hunt for Adults

GROOVE Magazin Berlin

Flyer Soziotope / Mike Riemel

Rote Fabrik – Lethargy (2000)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

Flyer Soziotope has showcased flyers since 1998, exploring and collecting this form of urban art and media. Collections belonging to hundreds of collectors have been turned into increasing numbers of new exhibitions and installations. The 2005 book of the same name is still considered the standard work on the topic. The medium was first appreciated for what it was on the 10th anniversary of the Love Parade and Popkomm, an international music trade show.

Flyer Soziotope - the exhibition (2009)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

Tresor (1994)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

Tresor – Berlin, 1994

Tresor (1994)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

Tresor – Berlin, 1994

WMF / Under Control (1999)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

WMF / Under Control – Berlin, 1999

Ostgut (2001)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

Ostgut – Berlin, 2001

Ostgut (2001)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

Ostgut – Berlin, 2001

Ostgut (2001)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

Ostgut – Berlin, 2001

Ostgut (2001)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

Ostgut – Berlin, 2001

WMF / Labland (2003)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

WMF / Labland – Berlin, 2003

Maria am Ostbahnhof (2004)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

Maria am Ostbahnhof – Berlin, 2004

Maria am Ostbahnhof (2004)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

The last print revolution has been fully displaced and superseded by digital networks like Myspace and Facebook since the 2000s. If the spread of the home computer including graphics programs marked the birth of the flyer among the general public, the Internet, as well as the miniaturization of the home computer into the smartphone, also marked its end as a widespread phenomenon.

Berghain / Substance (2010)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

Especially in cities like Berlin after the fall of the Berlin Wall, flyer culture propagated by the masses of potential venues was essential for getting ahead of the competition for the best audience. 

Omen (1998)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

Omen – Frankfurt Main, 1998

Ultraschall (1999)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

Ultraschall – München, 1999

Ultraschall (1999)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

Ultraschall – München, 1999

Ultraschall (1999)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

Ultraschall – München, 1999

Ultraschall (1999)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

Ultraschall – München, 1999

Stammheim (1998)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

Stammheim – Kassel, 1998

Stammheim (1998)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

Stammheim – Kassel, 1998

Elektrobunker (1998)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

Elektrobunker – Köln, 1998

Rote Flora / Fuse (2002)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

Old buildings were temporarily or fully repurposed before gentrification. Now it's difficult to find venues or even keep well-regarded locations altogether. Digitalization and scarcity are reducing the wide variety of print forms available. Regulations, rising costs, and pressure from the competition have led to commercialization and professionalization.

Loft Club (1999)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

Improvisation is taking place behind the scenes. At the same time, globalization is creating new club culture regions. Ibiza is now missing out to Croatia in terms of winning over summer clubbers. Georgia and Bucharest are alternatives to Berlin and Barcelona. Cheap flights have opened up completely new markets.

Loft Club (1999)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

Loft Club – Lausanne, 1999

Rote Fabrik – Lethargy (2000)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

Rote Fabrik – Lethargy – Zürich, 2001

Rote Fabrik – Lethargy (2000)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

Rote Fabrik – Lethargy – Zürich, 2001

Rote Fabrik – Lethargy (2000)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

Rote Fabrik – Lethargy – Zürich, 2001

Rote Fabrik – Lethargy (2000)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

Rote Fabrik – Lethargy – Zürich, 2001

LO.LI.TA – Gigolo (2001)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

LO.LI.TA – Gigolo – Barcelona, 2001

REX Club (1997)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

REX Club – Paris, 1997

REX Club (1997)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

REX Club – Paris, 1997

Ministry of Sound – Move (1999)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

Ministry of Sound – Move – London, 1999

Ministry of Sound – Move (1999)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

Ministry of Sound – Move – London, 1999

The End – Rephresh (2000)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

The End – Rephresh – London, 2000

The End – Rephresh (2000)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

The End – Rephresh – London, 2000

Hacienda – Baby Ford (1994)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

Hacienda – Baby Ford – Manchester, 1994

Melkweg – Sabotage – Amsterdam (2000)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

Club culture and festivals have been a relevant tourism factor for many cities. International line-ups are outdoing each other. New generations of graphics designers are earning their stripes with innovative flyer designs.  

Melkweg – Sabotage – Amsterdam (2000)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

The material has a unique zeitgeist. Special paper and colors, perforation, embossing, and formatting but also distribution methods help well-managed clubs stand out from the crowd. The heartfelt idea of harmonizing form and function but also achieving a visual style that matches the music and its tone are the quality criteria for urban propaganda.

J.J.GROOVE Magazin Berlin

J.J. – Peking

Liquid Room – Loopa (2000)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

Liquid Room – Loopa – Tokyo, 2001

Liquid Room – Loopa (2000)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

Liquid Room – Loopa – Tokyo, 2001

Installationsansicht aus dem C/O Berlin: No Photos on the Dancefloor (2019)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

When it comes to setting the expected atmosphere for an event, they'll still fulfill their purpose. The big surviving clubs will certainly continue to produce them after the pandemic.

Parador Analogo (2000)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

Will there still be flyers in the future? Whatever happens, these direct handouts are the most personal way to invite people. They remain difficult to control, and as a result, they help not-quite-legal events keep unwanted guests at bay.  

Installationsansicht aus dem C/O Berlin: No Photos on the Dancefloor (2019)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

And the small, illegal, new, and improvised project locations will definitely do so as well. For mainstream and up-and-coming clubs, posting the event on Resident Advisor, Facebook, and Instagram is likely enough. For the rest, the treasure hunt continues. 

Installationsansicht aus dem C/O Berlin: No Photos on the Dancefloor (2019)GROOVE Magazin Berlin

C/O Berlin: No Photos on the Dance Floor!, 2019

Credits: Story

Collection Flyer Soziotope / Mike Riemel

Credits: All media
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