"How to Get Into Berghain" has become a subject of fascination on the Internet. It’s not only what you wear! Despite your club work, you don’t photograph nightlife or street fashion. Some Berlin night-time venues with outdoor spaces, such as Klunkerkranich in Neukölln and ://about blank in Friedrichshain, have temporarily converted into beer gardens selling drinks and pizzas. Berghaintrainer. Since 1957, GQ has inspired men to look sharper and live smarter with its unparalleled coverage of style, culture, and beyond. But before that it had been more than ten years. Don’t speak in the line. It’s important to me we preserve some of that heritage, that it still feels like a welcoming place for the original sort of club-goers. Dress casually—jeans and a T-shirt is best. Berghain’s door staff have a reputation for turning away punters who do not meet its standards. In Berlin the night does not get started until 2 or 3am, so going to any club before midnight is not recommended. Do you feel like the face tattoo changed the way people look at you, how they interact with you?I’ve never regretted it. And during Easter, the club hosts its famous Snax Club, a men-only fetish and sex party weekender. Berghain, housed in an old power plant on the border between the Friedrichshain and Kreuzberg districts, will from 9 September show works produced during the Covid-19 lockdown by 85 Berlin-based artists, including established figures such as Olafur Eliasson, Tacita Dean and Wolfgang Tillmans and younger names such as Shirin Sabahi, Christine Sun Kim and Sandra Mujinga. Marquardt, while not working the door, is a distinguished photographer who has published three art books and a memoir, Die Nacht ist Leben. DJs have been playing sets in the adjacent beer garden since the start of August. Berghain bouncer Sven Marquardt is the subject of a new documentary along with another of the club's 'deciders', Smiley Baldwin, and Frank Künster, who worked a similar role at the sorely-missed Delicious Donuts during the 1990s, and more latterly King Size. You always want friction, though. There are no reservations, no bottle service, and no way to get on a guest list (unless you are deep in Berlin’s electronic-music scene). © 2020 Condé Nast. Who decides who gets in and who doesn’t? I still use analog film, too. Where did you get those rings? Berlins underground club scene meets industrial dark electro meets extreme crowd on drugs meets a neverending party. But while Berlin’s senate has paid out emergency funds of around €81,000 to a number of venues, organisers say they will struggle to keep paying their employees via the government’s part-time furlough scheme for much longer. The skulls ring is from a label, though, Wildcat in London. I’d like to read you a few of the tips that have been posted online, and get your reactions to them. Even the pronunciation sounds too cool for me to say (Berg-HINE). It was really difficult to get color film in East Germany, and what was available sucked big time. Sven Marquardt is probably the most famous doorman in the world. When was the last time you got a new tattoo?Just two days ago, seriously. For example, there was a time when I really loved bow ties—just the way they looked against my face tattoos. But there they were—three stars facing up on one calf, and three facing down on the other. GQ: So, Mr. Marquardt, what’s your typical week like?Sven Marquardt: My week is split between night and day. And last weekend I actually wore all white at the door, to mess with everybody. That’s the theme in any good club: diversity, friction.". Berghain is now associated with that sort of aesthetic—black, gothic, minimalist. Berghain’s bouncers are legends. He had always been the DJ at school dances—back then it was with tapes and cassette players—but all of the sudden, as techno took off, he was organizing these big parties professionally. I was completely sucked into it. Thanks to its extravagant atmosphere and its groundbreaking sounds, the club has won a rare and unique fame, deserving, a few days ago, that the stolen drinks were offered for sale on eBay. I mean, it was pretty much clear I wasn’t going to go into banking. This was 1983, I was 20 at the time. So what do you tell your guys working the door to look for in the line when they decide who comes in?It’s subjective. Its … Why?I like to start from a question: Is there a story we want to tell? It was this phenomenal, fascinating, vibrant feeling. Wow. Berghain’s door staff have a reputation for turning away punters who do not meet its standards. How night club bouncers police the social order - from Berlin to Johannesburg ... Berghain, is guarded by bouncer, Sven Marquardt, who has become a celebrity in his own right. Berlins Techno Club Berghain is known to be a people magnet, and for long, it has been the talk of the town. When you say you teach them "what Berghain is all about," what do you mean, then?I feel like I have a responsibility to make Berghain a safe place for people who come purely to enjoy the music and celebrate—to preserve it as a place where people can forget about space and time for a little while and enjoy themselves. I had to convince them. They’re just not my style. Do not over chit chat at the line (try not to talk with the bouncer at all, keep it at a minimum) You might wonder if you’re reading the points above how all of this complements to the club in a beneficial way. Beyond that, there are no set rules. Berghain: Attacked by racist bouncers. I’d love to hear about your tattoos. We still have fetish parties once or twice a year. “We also take guys in masks and kilts, or Pamela Anderson blondes in run-of-the-mill high-street outfits who tag along with bearded blokes, licking the sweat off each others’ armpits. Sven Marquardt, the clubland sentry who watches over the door of Berlin's legendary nightclub, Berghain, was given a taste of his own medicine at a nightclub in Sydney earlier this month.. Welcome to Berghain, “the world’s best club” — where getting past legendary doorman Sven Marquardt is to survive an ordeal that has been known to make grown clubbers weep. I’ll let him surprise me. “I don’t mind letting in the odd lawyer in a double-breasted suit with his Gucci-Prada wife. ... Berghain’s most famous bouncer, stares in silence as I stroll past him to begin my shameful, shirtless walk home. Don’t be too young. I got more and more tattoos until they were creeping up my chest, my neck, and finally I got tattooed on my face. An interactive video training for getting into nightclubs. On the other hand, a couple of times a year there would be these parades where tanks rolled down the street, and all these people you didn’t recognize would be there cheering—I think they were shipped in, actually. He was organizing a party at an old shoe store—around the block from here, actually—that would run for three consecutive weekends, and asked if I could help out. And honestly, I think sneakers are cool. Berghain is without any doubt the most famous and exclusive club in Berlin. There was a whorehouse in the front, and the club was in the back, called "Suicides." Do you dress differently for work than you do at home?How I dress depends a lot more on my general mood than on where I’m going. Don’t try to cut the line. The entrance fee will go towards supporting Berghain, one of 140 nightclubs in Berlin facing an uncertain future because of the pandemic. My colleagues tease me about it, like, hey, Sven, why don’t you dress more colorfully so the guests will stop wearing all black? That, for me, is Berghain.”. Or if you must, speak German. You only started using the Internet three years ago?I find the anonymity of the social networks annoying…all these spineless, no-name jerks posting their dumb-ass bullshit. It would feel less tolerant, too. But last summer, I was working the door in short pants, and one of my colleagues pointed out, "Hey, you have stars on your calves!" Use of this site constitutes acceptance of our User Agreement (updated 1/1/20) and Privacy Policy and Cookie Statement (updated 1/1/20) and Your California Privacy Rights. Recently, we sat down with Marquardt at a coffee shop in Berlin, where, through a translator, he talked about his photography, his personal style, and, somewhat reluctantly, what it takes to get into Berghain. Marquardt answered elaborately on questions ranging from subjects such as East Berlin at the time of the Wall, the fetish parties at Ostgut (Berghain’s predecessor), why he only wears black and more. Ad Choices, How the Bouncer of Berghain Chooses Who Gets Into the Most Depraved Party on the Planet, A Q&A with the debaucherous techno club's world-famous bouncer, Sven Marquardt, Inside the Atlanta Strip Club that Runs Hip Hop. Face tattoo-afficionado, professional photographer and world’s most infamous bouncer, Sven Marquardt, has given an interview to GQ Magazine. Up until then people had to fax me. Other clubs have held quiz nights or flea markets. Myself, I only started using the Internet three years ago. A Q&A with the debaucherous techno club's world-famous bouncer, Sven Marquardt. The adrenaline kick wasn’t there anymore—it was just exhausting. Curators said the exhibition would focus on “the studio as a space for contemplation and production”. In a 2014 memoir, bouncer Sven Marquart explained that his job was all about fostering the “right mix”. Visitors will be able to book guided tours that will take them through the club’s 3,500-sq-metre premises, including the dancefloor and the Panorama bar. I have no idea what he’s up to now. A memoir by the club's bouncer, Sven Marquardt, launched in Germany to critical acclaim this week, reveals the heavily tattooed and pierced figure guarding Berghain as a … I had discovered that there exists an online training site that takes you through the Berghain bouncer experience virtually, it’s called Berghain Trainer. That’s the theme in any good club: diversity, friction. "You always want friction, though. The bouncer may quiz you on which artist is playing in the club and, if you answer correctly, let you inside. Because Berghain is a techno nightclub, researching electronic or dance music from around the world (particularly Germany) could improve your chances of getting in. My people all have their own personalities, and you can see their sensibilities reflected in the crowd over the course of their shifts. That’s how I got my first job as a doorman. I hadn’t been too interested in all that at first, but I needed to make some money. There are many sites that speculate on the many and various things one should do to get in.First, let me say I don’t read that kind of stuff. Most of them aren’t from major fashion labels or anything, they’re just associated with personal memories. One of Berlin’s best known clubs, Berghain, recently fired a member of its security staff after a partygoer made a formal complaint. Infamous Berghain bouncer, Sven Marquardt, will attest to this, saying he and his men feel responsible for the club. Berghain is starting to feel like a … [Marquardt looks stone-faced] I’m listening. In addition to being the world's most famous bouncer, the East Berlin native is also an accomplished photographer who has exhibited his work in numerous locations around the world. But I don’t personally care to read it. You could break into empty apartment buildings or empty warehouses and just do what you wanted: install a makeshift bar, open up a club, celebrate and party until dawn. Ostgut and Berghain have been central to shaping techno culture in Berlin (and therefore the world) for decades. Only a few of my guys are allowed to select guests at the door. I had them covered up with two chopped-off wings. Don’t joke or laugh in line. The material on this site may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, cached or otherwise used, except with the prior written permission of Condé Nast. On the one hand, everything seemed so quiet and peaceful—you kind of forgot that there was this weird political party that controlled and governed everything. I had this analog SLR camera, a Praktica, and I just started photographing the people on the scene. As the stone-faced gatekeeper of the Berlin nightclub Berghain, he admits or denies the hordes of people who hope to attend the venue’s coveted parties. Does your upbringing influence how you look at the world?The eighties in East Berlin was a very weird time. But I didn’t wriggle or anything. In fact, you shoot everything with natural light, predominantly in black and white, and most of your work is posed and produced. 339 reviews of Berghain "Oh my god, fantastic...Thats the first thing that comes up in my mind when thinking of Berghain. In keeping with the club’s usual policy, visitors will be forbidden from taking photos inside the venue. The world’s most famous bouncer, Sven Marquardt of Berghain revealed for GQ what influences the door staff’s decisions of letting you into Berlin club. The company that runs Berghain is still called Ostgut GmbH, in fact. In a 2014 memoir, bouncer Sven Marquart explained that his … At some point I started working for a party called Ostgut—it was a gay fetish party—and that moved around for a while, and at a certain point moved into the power station and became Berghain. They had to go. At the time my younger brother, Oliver, was becoming a big part of Berlin’s electronic-music scene. The imposing hard music sanctuary blares out hypnotic techno with some people choosing not to see the light of day over the duration of a typical Friday-to-Monday clubbing marathon. They’re known for cultivating the club’s vibe by weeding out jerks who think Berghain is a bottle-service venue where you can grease the door guy and waltz on in. At the same time, though, almost anything was possible. Right now I’m planning a shoot for a small fetish label here in Berlin called Cyberesque. But he’s no dumb muscle. If we were just a club full of models, pretty people all dressed in black, it would be nice to look at for a half an hour, but god, that would be boring. That would be this man, Sven Marquardt, 52, who has run security at the club since it first opened in 2004. I’d been shooting for Sibylle, an East German fashion magazine, but that kind of work really dried up. Then we’d get creative with what we did have. But like I said, it’s subjective. She became my mentor throughout the eighties. New video: https://youtu.be/h8HXOrnUvbw World's biggest techno nightclub.Techno temple rare video. You grew up in East Berlin, and Berghain itself seems to be a very East German sort of place—it specializes in minimalist German techno, it exists in a massive East German power station. What led you to photography?I grew up in a bourgeois household—my mom was a laboratory assistant, my dad was an engineer, and my grandparents ran a little bakery. I remember going to Berghain’s predecessor Ostgut in the 90s: it was rough and local, a place on the edge, something of a secret. They have to understand what Berghain is all about first, and I try to give them that foundation. - See 940 traveler reviews, 107 candid photos, and great deals for Berlin, Germany, at Tripadvisor. I got addicted to the feeling. The collaboration between the nightclub and the art world is the latest creative attempt to preserve the infrastructure of Berlin’s nightlife during the pandemic. What happened?I stopped ten years ago because the pain of being tattooed just started getting on my nerves. Every weekend, as dawn breaks over Berlin, a line of several hundred people curls back from the hulking shell of a former East German power plant. Nico Limo, who identifies as … My colleagues read the stuff that’s posted and sometimes share it with me, and we joke about it. Spectacular myths of how to get past the bouncers have even circulated across the Atlantic with celebrities showing up (and getting rejected) and tourists trying in from all over the world, hoping for a crazy night out in Berlin's finest Schwitzkasten. Don’t go in a big group. Berghain is Berlin's most famous techno club and is known for its anything-goes darkrooms and ominous bouncer, photographer Sven Marquardt. From award-winning writing and photography to binge-ready videos to electric live events, GQ meets millions of modern men where they live, creating the moments that create conversations. And then a few hours from now, my life switches to nightlife once again. I saw a picture in a magazine of Tony Ward, one of Madonna’s former lovers, and he had a cross like it on his forearm. Some of my colleagues have entire rooms filled with New Balances. To revisit this article, visit My Profile, then View saved stories. [Laughs, shrugs] We’ve heard all those things, too. Read about why the door policy is so strict here. Notorious bouncer Sven Marquardt is the golden key to gain entry into Berlin’s most exclusive techno nightclub, Berghain, and pleasing him is a … So how does a professional photographer end up running the door at Berlin’s most famous nightclub?After the wall fell, East Berlin was almost anarchistic. Wilson Gonzalez Ochsenknecht über After-Show-Partys und das Berliner Berghain | PMKS 560 - Duration: 5:40. The Berghain - the wildest and most secretive techno club in the world. But at the same time there was a punk and new-wave scene rising up in Prenzlauer Berg [a residential neighborhood in East Berlin]; all these kids spiking up their hair and wearing eyeliner. Weve been told to go here on a Sunday morning (yes..in the morning), and they couldnt have been more right. Special thanks to Damian Kastil and Daniel Regut. My work was discovered by my friend’s mother, actually—the photographer Helga Paris. I found it fascinating and wanted to be a part of it. Berghain. All rights reserved. We couldn’t actually have any of it, but we were trying to soak it up, sense what was different and new and let it inspire us. Then another club caught my attention. Inside is Berghain (pronounced Berg-HINE), an electronic-music club famous for supremely good techno, round-the-clock debauchery (the beats pulse from midnight Saturday until noon Monday), and, to the chagrin of many in line, what may be the world’s strictest, most inscrutable door policy. If they make a good impression, let them in,” he wrote. This history and status within Berlin is the driving force behind the club’s difficult door policy and the main reason why Berghain is so hard to get into. A club would be in one place, then relocate, then relocate again. The one I’m wearing today, for example, is from Preach, a label based in Dusseldorf. Lab.Oratory at Berghain Club, Berlin Described as a ‘religious experience’ by Rolling Stone , Berghain houses one of the most powerful sound systems in the world. Then there's a whole other layer of cultural and musical significance. And of course we weren’t allowed to leave the country. The first permanent doorman job I had was at a building called Bienenkorb [Beehive]. Good bouncers can tell if you look like you’re there to get f***ed up and ruin a good time. In keeping with the club’s usual policy, visitors to the show at Berghain will be forbidden from taking photos inside the venue. For more on Berghain, here are28 tips on how to get past the bouncers, a Palace t-shirt paying homage to those who have been denied and a virtual reality game for people that want to know what it's like to face the bouncer. So I’d wear them everywhere, even when I went to the supermarket. This is a rookie mistake; Berghain technically opens at midnight on Friday, and if you’re over keen and are the first to arrive the bouncers are not going to be very impressed. Study popular Berghain music before you go. “It’s subjective. Visitors can view work by likes of Olafur Eliasson and Tacita Dean and take guided tours of venue, Last modified on Thu 13 Aug 2020 12.13 EDT. I just totally relaxed. I’ve never once worn sneakers. It’s no myth that Berghain is a challenge to get into. Berlin’s legendary Berghain nightclub will relax its notoriously strict door policy for art lovers from next month as the venue turns into a gallery while the German capital’s nightlife remains on hold because of the pandemic. But really, black just happens to be in fashion with the new generation, too. How the Bouncer of Berghain Chooses Who Gets Into the Most Depraved Party on the Planet. GQ may earn a portion of sales from products that are purchased through our site as part of our Affiliate Partnerships with retailers. Right now it’s definitely about leather jackets. Which was your first?A cross of thorns, on my leg. Only a few of my guys are allowed to select guests at the door. Usually tattoo parlors won’t go there. I spend two nights a week working the door at Berghain—Friday and Saturday, when the club is in full swing—and the rest of the week I wake up naturally at 7:30 A.M. and I’m working on photography projects. Companies just didn’t exist anymore. Such freedom extends to the dreaded bouncers who sometimes deny visitors access to the club, which DVS1 believes is also necessary to preserve Berghain's underground bona fides. While Berlin claims to be home to the highest density of studios and artists’ workshops in Europe, many artists have struggled to find outlets for their work as exhibitions and art fairs have been cancelled or postponed. Die Pierre M. Krause Show 10,768 views 'Berlin techno' now is pretty much synonymous with the stripped-down but heavy hitting sound that the club is famous for. It has nothing to do with flying—quite the contrary. Go early. What was nightlife like after the wall fell?Nothing was very permanent. Since it had been so long, I experienced the pain like when I got my first tattoos. It was such an adrenaline rush. Berghain, once dubbed the “Berlin Philharmonic of electronic music”, shut its doors to protect visitors from the virus on 11 March, before authorities began enforcing closures by law. People opposed the dictatorship and wanted to somehow express their point of view. The show, called Studio Berlin, has been organised by but does not include works owned by the foundation of the art collector couple Christian and Karen Boros, whose collection is on display inside a former second world war air raid shelter in central Berlin. I’d forgotten about them! If you suddenly wanted to switch up your style and start wearing pastels and boat shoes, could you?No way! -Because there’s already too much hype, and the club doesn’t need any more tourists. Now I feel like black and white photography creates a different drama, and has a soberness to it that I like. The one on your middle finger…is that a big pile of skulls?I’ve collected all my rings over the last 20 years, my necklaces, too. His criteria for entry is undisclosed, mysterious, and the source of tired speculation. He may be the only bouncer in the world who has also done a menswear collaboration with Hugo Boss. Anyway, they were just so ’90s. Many folks wait hours and then, with no explanation, get politely asked to step aside and go elsewhere. It has to do with being grounded. By Burt Hel m. July 25, 2015 Honestly, I don’t like pastels and I’ve never worn boat shoes. The club evolved from the gay scene in Berlin in the nineties. What a name. As far as the film and lighting, that has more to do with my upbringing. After this interview with you, I’m headed to the Hackesche Höfe [a commercial area in Berlin], where I’m shooting some photos for Jan-Henrik Scheper-Stuke, a menswear designer who used to own a fashion label called Edsor Kronen that specialized in ties, bow ties, and handkerchiefs. Know who’s DJ-ing that night. I felt like we were always looking beyond the wall—what’s out there?
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