Report: 3hd festival 2019

It wouldn’t be autumn without our review of 3hd festival – here’s our take on the five days of events exploring the topic of “Fluid Wor(l)ds.”

Words shape our worlds.
This might sound like quite an über-philosophical statement, yet it is pretty easy to explain – our language(s) influence, and limit, how we perceive the reality we face every day. It’s difficult to understand something you have no terminology for. Yet, language is not accessible to all, and censoring of certain terms, or even not adding them to the vocabulary, can be used as a strong silencing tool. But once you discover those expressions, those strangely attached letters that at first make no sense to you, your whole perception changes: your understanding of the world starts to shift, to bend, to reform. It becomes fluid.

This year’s edition of 3hd festival was set to explore the various methods of world-making, combining a plethora of irl and url practices and media. Spread over five days, the topic of “Fluid Wor(l)ds” was brought up in live shows, film screenings, performances, and panels, taking place at HAU, Trauma Bar und Kino, and Post Bank’s Postscheckamt. While it would be difficult to cover all of 3hd’s extensive program, we’ve compiled a list of our personal top moments at least – read it below.

 

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Debby Friday’s live set at “Switching Codes,” on Oct 24
This Canadian babe’s show can be described with one word: INTENSE. It felt like an aural embodiment of femme power, darkness, danger, fearless confidence, BDSM, and black leather. It was sexy, it was frightening, it was 100% real. Debby’s lyrics sharp enough to cut your throat, their energy drawing you closer and closer, entangling you in the heavy-hitting beats. Definitely our new music crush!

 

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Word Play I and II, on Oct 25 and 26
This two-day program was full of performances of all kinds, presenting a truly queer and intersectional showcase of contemporary storytelling, often touching upon difficult topics like violence against women and LGBT folks in Turkey, for example. With Freeka Tet, Steph Kretowicz, Alpha Maid, and Claudia Pagés on the first night, and James Massiah, Ms. Carrie Stacks, Erica Scourti, Göksu Kunak a.k.a Gucci Chunk / Laure M. Hiendl on the second.

 

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CURL presents Mayonnaise, Corn on the Cob and My Car, on Oct 23
London’s collective CURL, formed by Mica Levi, Coby Sey and Brother May—who, unfortunately, only joined via video call on a cell phone (talk about combining url and irl!)—was joined by filmmaker Akinola Davies Jr. to present their joint effort “Mayonnaise, Corn on the Cob and My Car.” Loud shrieks, wigs, almost-ritual-like repetitive chants, invented dance, and Akin’s video playing in the background, rounded up by Coby handing out chalk to the audience to write positive affirmations on the floor. What a cute Wednesday night!

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Catnapp’s live set at “E-Work. Transcending Realities,” on Oct 26
This Argentinian-turned-Berliner artist is known for her dynamic “electro-rap” live shows, so it comes with no surprise that our hopes were high for this show, and we sure weren’t disappointed. Fire energy, that’s all we have to say!

 

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x/o’s live set at “Switching Codes,” on Oct 24
Angelic presence, amazing video art, experimental digital music. We highly recommend checking out this artist represented by Quantum Natives!

 

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Lou Drago’s film program at “E-Work. Transcending Realities,” on Oct 26
Trauma Bar und Kino has quickly become one of hip venues of Berlin, and what’s so great about it is the little cinema tucked away from the dance floor, where you can comfortably recharge after dancing for hours. For 3hd’s Saturday party there was a special program co-curated by Berlin-based queer artist Lou Drago, featuring works by Monira Al Qadiri, shawné michaelain holloway, Rainer Kohlberger, Vika Kirchenbauer (whose porn-like video “SHE WHOSE BLOOD IS CLOTTING IN MY UNDERWEAR” we especially loved), and James Richards. Watching art films at a pumping party? We’re in!

 

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Of course, nothing in life is a fairytale, and there were some minuses too: for example, Sophie’s surprise DJ set, which mostly felt like Youtube DJing (but not in a very good sense), or the art show that seemed a bit lost in the former bank office space, and especially the octopus-beating video (excuse me, what?). But in the end, the festival brought a lot of fresh and much-needed perspectives, some amazing live acts, cool performances, and we did have a lot of fun, so all is forgiven. Till next year, 3hd!

3hd festival: Website, Instagram
Text: Anna Wim, Polina Korneeva
Photo: Anna Wim

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