Illustrative 2009 Event

17-OCT-2009, Berlin, Germany

On 17-OCT, the second Club'Art Swatch The Club event took place in Berlin.  About 30 club members from Europe (Germany, Switzerland, Italy, UK, Portugal, ...) participated at the event.  At 1pm, we met near the Villa Elisabeth in the Invalidenstrasse.  The villa is located next to the St. Elisabeth church, you can see the entrance of the former church on the photo below.  The St. Elisabeth church was destroyed a few weeks before the end of the war in march 1945.  For the next decades, during the GDR times, only a ruin was left.  Since 1990, the church is being renovated slowly.

This time, Antonio (new head of Swatch The Club, congratulations!) probably had the smallest welcome desk of all times!  He handed out a bag with several catalogues about the exhibition and participating artists.

Half an hour later, everyone was there and Antonio gave a small welcome speech.  First, we had a visit to the "real life" version of the Swatch MTV playground in the St. Elisabeth church.  The Swatch MTV playground is a virtual community that connects the most exciting and innovative creative talent from across the globe.  On this weekend, Berlin was the final stop of several Swatch MTV playground events with previous stops in Lucerne, Switzerland, Shanghai, Tokyo, Amsterdam, ...

So, let's have a look inside of the St. Elisabeth church...

video displays and artist swatches

time for us to play!

more art swatches

Jean-Bernard on stage

live DJ

...and "artwork to go".  Lots of nice posters also featuring the artists who designed the recent art Swatches

greetings from Berlin!

no comment

About one hour later, it was time for a visit to the Villa Elisabeth where the Illustrative 2009 exhibition is held from 16-OCT to 01-NOV-2009.  So, the night before, the Grand Opening had taken place with a huge success.  Lots and lots of visitors!  The director of the Illustrative festival gave some introductory words about the exhibition and the artists. 

For the next hour or so, the director of the Illustrative festival took us on a tour around the exhibition.  He gave a lot of explanations about the artists, their style and different (mostly unique) methods of working.

bouquet with magical beef and friends by Erik Mark Sandberg, Los Angeles

bonkei by Keiichi Tanaami, Tokyo

Keiichi Tanami (born 1936 in Tokyo) is the father of Japanese pop art.  In 1975, he became the first art director of the Japanese issue of Playboy.  He is the oldest artist on display at the Illustrative, most of the other artists are quite young, in their 20s and 30s....

on the left:  ctrl helping hands by Jesse Auersalo, New York

by Sébastien Preschoux, France

Sébastien Preschou also made a "3-D" installation at the exhibition, produced in 1,5 days, with 2,5 kilometers of string:

Sébastien explains his installation in the following video, really interesting:

evolving moment by Aya Kato, Seto-Shi Aichi, Japan

by Skinner, Sacramento, USA

childhood quilt by Siggi Eggertson, Reykjavik / Berlin, 2006
designed on a computer, hand made quilt!

from left to right:  anger, lechery, pride, and gluttony by Christian Montenegro, Buenos Aires

Christian Montenegro is the winner of last years Illustrative 2008 competition.  He is the designer of the Bold Cat (GZ207S) Club'Art collection special (that was the first prize of last years competition):

by Erik Mark Sandberg, Los Angeles

...there is no escape by Roman Bittner, Berlin (paper, laser engraving!)

On the second floor, we had a nice overview of the exhibition:

At around 3pm, it was shopping time!  We walked over to the nearby Swatch Instant Store Berlin in the Münzstraße. 

Swatch Germany and Jürgen Papst had organized a sale of older specials at regular prices.

Lots of Swatch MTV Playground paintings on display, and in the center of the room, we could see the two specials from the weekend before.  The Chrono Automatic launch special (limited to only 77 pcs) and the nice new Chrono Plastic Boom The Lyrics (SUIB101) with an extra loop around the strap and in a metal box with printed event logo.

And finally, in another corner of the room, it was time for a meet and greet and an autograph session with the three Club'Art 2009 special designers.  From left to right:  David Benedek (Munich, Germany), Christian Montenegro (Buenos Aires, Argentinia), and Tanja Székessy (Berlin, Germany).

The event participants received a special box (limited to 111 pcs) containing the three Club'Art specials, ready to be autographed:

The watches in the box have an extra loop with the Illustrative event logo around the strap:

We had plenty of time to talk with the artists and to visit the Swatch MTV Playground exhibition, including two unique painted Maxi Swatches!

At 5pm, we returned back to the St. Elisabeth church to witness the art battle of the Swatch MTV playground...

The winner (on the left [sorry I don't remember the name]) received one of the 111 special packagings of the Club'Art swatches.  You can see the packaging in the front of the wooden box.

The day ended at the famous Clärchens Ballhaus restaurant nearby.  A unique place with dinner and dance like in the good old days...  Check out the movie on the homepage of the restaurant.

Overall, it was a really, really enjoyable day with lots of different activities and experiences.  Thanks to everyone from Swatch The Club for organizing this nice little event!  See you again near xmas at the other side of the ocean :-)

Andreas Wiethoff, 23-OCT-2009

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