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Geniale Dilletanten: Subculture in Germany in the 1980s

Home > Melbourne > Art | Exhibitions | Free | Galleries
by Angie (subscribe)
Melbourne-based freelance writer & graphic designer.
Event: -
Explore the Rebellious Subculture of Eighties Germany
Exhibition, German, Art, Music, 1980s
Geniale Dilletanten Touring Exhibition


Experimental, loud and expressive, a brief period of artistic rebellion in eighties Germany spawned a new subculture that manifested itself through brute noise, Super 8 films, cheap photocopied fanzines and 'wild' figurative painting and sculpture which challenged the ideas of 'good taste' within Germany at the time.

The international touring exhibition Geniale Dilletanten (Brilliant Dilletantes), Co-presented by RMIT University and The Goethe-Institut Australia, presents the most comprehensive survey of 1980s German subculture to date.

Exhibition, German, Art, Music, 1980s
Einstürzende Neubauten, Festival "Berlin Atonal", 1982. Photograph by Anno Dittmer.


The exhibition showcases everything from video and photographic material to magazines, posters, record covers, gig posters and other artefacts. An interview film produced especially for the exhibition will also be on display, providing an insight into the impact of this unique time on art, film, fashion and design.

Geniale Dilletanten refers to the deliberately misspelled title of the concert held in Berlin's Tempodrom in 1981. The name has become synonymous with a time in German history that resulted in a wave of new record labels, magazines, galleries and clubs, as well independently produced records, tapes and concerts fueld by a do-it-yourself. The exhibition will focus on the output of seven important bands, as well as various artists, filmmakers and designers from West and East Germany.

exhibition, German, Art, Music, 1980s
Casio PT-30, Casio Computer Co, Ltd, Japan, 1984. From the Geniale Dilletanten Exhibition


As part of the exhibition, RMIT Gallery presents 'Australian Ingenious Amateurs' which will give visitors a taste of what was happening closer to home, particularly in Melbourne from 1979 to 1989.

The exhibition will explore an Australian subculture which include the Little Band scene and the Clifton Hill Community Music Centre. Some of these amateur artists and musicians, such as Nick Cave, would go on to become international names.

This free exhibition will be running until February at the RMIT Gallery and is sure to bring a little spark of rebellious inspiration to your day.
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Why? Explore the Rebellious Subculture of 1980s Germany.
When: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, 11am-5pm. Saturday 12-5pm.
Phone: 9925 1717
Where: RMIT Gallery
Cost: Free
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