Approaching the pub-turned-occasional-art-space Das Gift on an unassuming corner in the Berlin district Neukölln, I had high hopes for the Helibase – Part.II opening night. High hopes, which were immediately dashed as a sad looking, white washed room presented itself, triangular cardboard sculptures littering the floor, scribbled drawings on one wall, a television with accompanying suspended headphones in the middle of the room. Then came the lengthy explanation, tacked to a plain white board in minuscule text, “This Exhibition explores an abstract and radicalised observation…” I could already feel that this would be quite an interesting and hopefully profound night.
Tracing the path of those who have gone before us – two people admire the Helibase “Data Maps” on show. Photographer: Marie Burrows
A performance was scheduled for later in the evening and despite my misgivings I felt strangely compelled to stay, in the same way I have to finish a bad book just to know what happens. There was only one option, the bar. A few pints later I find out that actually, this on first-thought “dingy looking pub” is owned by one of the members of Mogwai and is an uber cool hangout spot for nineties celebs. I should’ve known – we are in Neukölln, after all.