Berlin has always been considered poor, but sexy. It’s this vibe that attracts many visitors to the city each year, which is something that investors and entertainers have struggled to harness into cash-money without shaking Berlin’s unique brand of grit. A failed attempt could easily ruin everything that makes this city so special. There have long been fears amongst Berliners that clubs are already getting gimmicky and overrun with gawkers. How do they, as Yahoo put it, ‘bottle Berlin’s cultural lightning’ without causing it to lose its essence?
To ensure that things are done right, the right person must spearhead this project. So far, so good in this department as Dimitri Hegemann, founder of Berlin’s wildly popular club, the legendary Tresor, is the one behind this operation.
Equally important is the venue, which is what is currently making the techno museum newsworthy. Scholars and experts have debated for years about the role that the setting plays in showcasing artwork, concepts, and objects of cultural importance. There is no doubt that the whole topic of techno would lose its luster if it were housed on Museum Island. So, what does Hegemann have in mind?
After months of eager anticipation in the press, he finally released the location this week. The techno museum will officially be housed in the enormous Kraftwerk complex in Mitte. This former power station has served as a venue for Berlin’s Atonal Festival in recent years. Kraftwerk feels like the most natural spot for the museum considering Tresor itself has been housed in one of its buildings since 2007.
In the museum, Hegemann hopes to pay homage to the musical genre and its surrounding subculture. For this reason, he intends to do more than expose visitors to different sounds of techno. He also wants to explore its impacts on culture and to ‘convey the feeling’ of the genre to visitors through creating a club-like atmosphere that engages all of the senses. From its art to its nightlife to its flourishing foodie scene, he credits techno with enabling so many unique facets of city life to flourish after the fall of the wall. To eliminate some of the stuffiness and antiquity associated with the term ‘museum,’ Hegemann prefers to view his new project as the ‘Living Archive of Elektronika.’