The erotic chronicle of an unerotic era by Gili Shani & Chris Steinweg
To open the first page somehow feels just like getting into one of the Berlin clubs you might have visited too (except, you wouldn’t see Gili Shani sitting on the toilet reading a book).
“VOYEUR. BERLIN. KINKY” by Gili Shani & Christoph Steinweg: The first time you might see hundreds of naked people like this: having sex on their couches, showing their tattooed pussies or pierced dicks close-up on the kitchen table.
Please, come in and have a first row seat.
No shame here, this is Berlin.
Buckle up your harness, or unbutton your pants, whatever feels more comfortable. This is your chance to be part of the most open community on the planet.
Remember the nights before COVID hit us? It’s seems more than ages since Gili Shani took our last picture not too far from a threesome, but we still remember vividly what it was like to go to KitKat.
Standing half naked in line outside with hard cold nipples, not knowing what to expect, but couldn’t fucking wait to get in. Because you knew: this is a different world. A world of free spirits:
“We were free, inhaling the city. … The moments of happiness were limitless. Everything was possible, self evident, self determined, self realizing. A succulent kiss with a strange dancer. The last page of a book, written and read with friends.”
There is no other place in the world that is that tolerant, full of sexy, inspiring people of all ages and without boundaries.
Or is it?
Now, our own homes have become our personal dungeons.
The world shut down and our kinky family lost its stages. We stayed submissive and distant, as loneliness fucked us over hard.
But luckily for us…what originally was an idea by Gili Shani (photographer), came to life by partnering with Christoph Steinweg (producer and Symbiotikka founder). Together they show us that we’re not so lonely, even if away from clubs.
Talking to Chris he told us: “I remember the first time I was going to KitKat… The people at the bar were working without pants.
I remember wondering, what’s the idea behind it?
Now I think the idea behind is this: okay, I show you my pussy or I show you my dick, and so what?
What’s your problem?
In this moment, it is your problem, not my problem.”
Inspired by Nobuyoshi Araki’s documentary work from the 80s, Gili Shani and Chris Steinweg visited nearly 241 people.
They entered their homes, asked them to dress up like any normal pre-covid night in the city, and took pictures. Provocative, inspiring and capturing the spirit that makes Berlin…well…Berlin.
The unfiltered version, of course.
Every shooting was quick, just as in KitKat Club. Taking the pictures as fast as they could and without special equipment.
As Gili said: “The photos are rough, they’re not clean fashion pictures. No Photoshop, no filters, nothing. It’s not about the clothes either, it’s about the attitude. This is a time capsule, this is Berlin.”
It’s the first book that dares presenting the planet’s wildest community in lockdown. Alive, horny as shit and most of all: still a community.
The book is called VOYEUR.BERLIN.KINKY. and it takes you to the private dungeons of a brave breed.
“I think in the book the people are showing a different side of them. Not only their kinky side, but the openness of who they really are.” says Gili.
So we can’t help but wonder: how does it feel to be part of this kinky family project? Talking to one of the sizzling hot models featured in the book, Mellon, we got an even deeper POV:
“I first met Gili Shani in June 2018 at one of the first exhibitions for Kreuzbergkinder.
Over two years of countless conversations and photos by the kitty pool, Gili became a warm and familiar face whose art I absolutely adored and was honoured to be a part of.
When he mentioned this project during the lockdown, I jumped at the opportunity.
It was a chance to explore my exhibitionist side once more, to connect with others isolated across the city, and to forget about the deadly invisible entity that stopped all of our lives.
Besides, it was a chance to dress up (or down) and play again. A chance to take a literal snapshot of our time in a pandemic.
I was also morbidly curious to see what other kinky perverts were up to.
For me, this book took away the taboo around Kitty and people who see themselves as ‘kinky’.
There’s varying levels of experience in the book but a main theme runs throughout.
Everyone involved is exploring, pushing boundaries, and having a great time while doing it.
Here we are, showing solidarity with each other through harnesses and whips.”
This is how this chronicle and time capsule of Berlin was created. Presenting many bodies with one spirit and making the world a little bit better through openness, respect, authenticity and freedom. One frame and one story at a time.
As Chris said: “We need to talk about these things. Respect, diversity, self-confidence, body positivity and sex positivity.
In a time that’s becoming more and more conservative, we must stand together against it.” — and we couldn’t agree more.
Finally, after scrolling through hundreds of tattooed pussies and pierced dicks, we recommend you stay focused.
You’ll find this poem, right at the last pages of the book, bringing the project to a close:
“There is still a WE, after all. Community is within us — even when alone, without certainty or knowledge — you cannot pass us by. This is US here now, standing in solid strength and liberated diversity.
We abolish comparison. We no longer look up or look at, but see ourselves. And this, this is a form of happiness only found in us.”
To join this religion from Berlin,
click on VOYEUR.BERLIN.KINKY.
Originally published on BERLINABLE.com