Why indieberlin? Less a manifesto, more a way to begin a conversation

Noel Maurice of indieberlin

indieberlin embraces what could perhaps be called the new mainstream. As part of the new wave of digital natives who have grown up in the internet age, basing our business models or even life models on outdated ideas which are themselves built around technologies which either don’t exist anymore or else have faded into the background so much that they are now only vaguely relevant, and that we know will in the next few years disappear completely, is no longer considered as the first option, the one that we react against.

This moulding our lives and our ways of doing things around today’s technologies has evolved and – for younger people especially – become so much the accepted way of doing things that it is no longer considered revolutionary or rebellious, simply the newer way of doing things.

The concept of indie is a part and parcel of this trend. The possibilities presented to us in how we both consume and produce things no longer automatically lean towards mass production as the de facto production form. The long tail, on-demand production facilities, the emergence of the 3d printer, targeted advertising and the prevalence of online purchasing, consumption and in fact life, all lead indie towards becoming the new mainstream.

As young (and not so young) independent artists submersed in the Berlin creative scene, we have seen this phenomenon grow up around us. Whereas we originally chose the independent or indie lifestyle out of a mixture of personal aesthetics and a desire to live outside of the normal way of life, more as an experiment than anything else, we have realized that our choices were coincidentally in line with the zeitgeist – that we were unthinkingly part of the vanguard of artists who could see what was eventually obvious to everyone, could see what was coming.

The core concept of indieberlin is exactly that. It is what it says on the tin. While being involved in the arts ourselves, we also stand back to wonder at what our new possibilities are throwing up and the way that they are being used, played with, turned in on themselves and reformed. We live in a world that is changing at an incredible rate, with new innovations that impact directly on our day to day lives coming thick and fast.

And art being what it is, and artists being what they are, this change is reflected directly back out at the world. Be it music, fashion, visual art, lifestyle…the new mainstream is indie and we are there. To watch, to embrace, to celebrate, and to make our own contribution.

By Noel Maurice, indieberlin editor, recovering musician and author of The Berlin Diaries.

Noel Maurice is one of the founders of indieberlin. Originally from the UK via a childhood in Johannesburg, he has been resident in Berlin since 1991. Describing himself as a 'recovering musician', he is the author of The Berlin Diaires, a trilogy detailing the East Berlin art and squat scene of the early 90s, available on Amazon and through this site.

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