Art aficionados will appreciate the perpetual spin of their heads while in Berlin. Home to nearly 500 galleries and scores of sexy nightclubs, Berlin is the juggernaut for scores of international artists. This dynamic, progressive city still shows remnants of its notorious history. But on the horizon, there is a colorful presence emerging—an ever growing local art scene. Its young, optimistic energy and experimental spirit is infused with an undercurrent of grit, giving this eternally unfinished city some viable street cred. With an abundance of raw warehouse spaces and relatively low cost of living, Berlin has become the Mecca for emerging artists like Maria Imaniel.
Maria Imaniel describes her work as temporary pornographic art—perhaps because nothing is ever permanent. Her large-scale paintings illustrate vibrant and colorful scenes of people having sex, falling in love, and dreaming in technicolor. But not far beneath the surface, and betwixt the block solid lines, one can see the artists humor mixed in with directness. According t0 Imaniel, playfulness and sex are two things that go together. One cannot exist without the other, especially for a satisfying experience. An example of the artists humor is illustrated in “Mr. Glass Penis.” Imaniel says it makes her laugh because there is an exciting dilemma in seeing where women stand in line waiting for a man’s fragile cock. By the looks of it, his penis represents the fragility of an overinflated ego.
Not wanting to be pigeonholed, Imaniel lives life through her artistic expression—whether it’s as a painter, photographer, actress or singer. Berlin offers her the nourishment that feeds her creativity. As her work may suggest, Maria Imaniel is a self-taught painter. Inspired by her surroundings, she walks around her adopted city and looks at the vibrant chemistry of art. Berlin, known for its pragmatic architecture, is the perfect backdrop for the newest art movement. The air is plentiful, the city is cheap, and it has great working conditions. “Here I can close myself off from the rest of the world and still be a part of it all,” says Imaniel.
Unlike the posh galleries events in New York City or Los Angeles, a majority of the art openings are hosted at nightclubs and bars. Bringing art to the masses, these venues are perfect for artists who want to network with like-minded individuals. It exposes people who typically don’t walk into galleries to experiencing art in a whole new way. One club hosting the immersive experience is Berlin’s KitKatClub. World renown, this multilevel den of debauchery attracts artists and patrons from all over Europe—not because of its fine drink selection, swimming pools, and dance floors—but because it is one of the only clubs where people can openly engage in sexual acts. And what better way to inspire a sexy mood than offering up a visual feast created by Maria Imaniel. Hanging prominently throughout the nightclub is her highly stylized erotic art. The images of intercourse, oral sex, and unbridled passion is the fuel to inspire writhing bodies on the dance floor.
To see more work by Maria Imaniel, visit her website here.