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Event Summary

Amin Gulgee Gallery, Karachi, Pakistan
Apr 16
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Event Details & Reservation

Presented by the Goethe-Institut Pakistan in collaboration with Amin Gulgee Gallery

Urban Subcultures in Germany and Pakistan - Brilliant Dilletantes in Dialogue
16 April 2018 -30 April, 2018

This April, the Goethe-Institut Pakistan, in collaboration with Amin GulgeeGallery is thrilled to present Outsiders, a curated event series that showcases the intense flurry of cultural activity that was the ‘Brilliant Dilletantes’ subculture in 1980s Berlin and across Germany, curated by Mathilde Weh and Leonhard Emmerling. 
A dialogue will be incited between this German exhibition and a Pakistani counterpart, curated by Amin Gulgee, Zarmeene Shah and Zeerak Ahmed. Posed as a response to the German exhibition, the Pakistani segment explores notions of sub/counter-culture in the country, investigating myriad forms of this from the 1970s to present day. By no means a definitive survey, the exhibition in fact attempts to prompt a series of questions that investigate the idea of counter culture in the Pakistani context, a layered and complex line of enquiry in a country that is marked as just over 70 years old but with a history that extends thousands of years in its regional and socio-political implications. As such, questions of what is then ‘culture’ become integral to the definition of its converse, ‘counter culture’. This is further problematized by Pakistan’s own political and cultural narrative, which has remained (sometimes violently) in a seemingly perpetual state of flux, coming to define, over various periods, what is seen as cultural and thus counter-cultural as per the dictates of its times, its modes of governance, and its politico-juridical structures. 
The exciting program of exceptional artistry is anchored by the international touring exhibition Brilliant Dilletantes (Geniale Dilletanten) at Amin Gulgee Gallery in Karachi, which is accompanied by live performances, film screenings and panel discussions in featuring revered artists and experimental musicians. Since the early 1980s particularly Berlin has been a magnet and inspiration for international artists such as Nick Cave, The Necks, David Bowie, and Brian Eno. Munich-based curator Mathilde Weh: “The Goethe-Institut is delighted to bring Geniale Dilletanten to Pakistan. The incredible influence of the movement’s DIY aesthetics still felt in Germany and internationally today and continues to inform contemporary artistic practice.” Curator Leonhard Emmerling will come for the opening of the exhibition.
The Pakistani show within the exhibition ‘Outsiders’ investigates counter-cultural expressions in the country from the 1970s to the present day, as witnessed in diverse formations and iterations. These are then presented through the lens of social and political activism in art, the subversion of gender roles as explored through various mediums and utterances, the possibilities within and dissemination of subcultural conversations through the emergence of social media platforms, and various modes of this as encountered in music, television, film, fashion, photography, performance, as well as particular and individualistic expressions in Pakistani society through the last several decades. 
Geniale Dilletanten was the term used to announce a concert held in Berlin’s Tempodrom in 1981. The deliberately misspelled title has become synonymous with an era of artistic upheaval in Germany that brought the country’s edgy artistic scene international recognition. Exploding from its roots in German art schools, punk rock and Dada, the movement represented a radical departure from the mainstream, marked by cross-genre experimentation, the use of new electronic equipment, and adopting German rather than English as the language for lyrics and band names. 
The Geniale Dilletanten exhibition illustrates the movement’s extraordinary innovative spectrum through portraits of seven key experimental bands – Einstürzende Neubauten, Die Tödliche Doris, Der Plan, Freiwillige Selbstkontrolle (F.S.K.), Palais Schaumburg, Ornament und Verbrechen, and Deutsch-Amerikanische Freundschaft (D.A.F.) – as well as visual artists, filmmakers and designers from West and East Germany and Pakistani 
Exploring the simultaneous rapid and rebellious developments in art, film, fashion and design, Geniale Dilletanten is the most comprehensive survey of the 1980s German subculture to date, incorporating a rich array of video and photographic material, interview films, audio samples, magazines, posters and other artefacts capturing the bold and daring scene. 
Complementing the Geniale Dilletanten exhibition in Karachi are one-off panel discussions and performances that further examine the legacy of German subcultures and bring it to life for new audie

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