If posters were rock and roll's early, defining visual hallmark, then flyers, which range from the size of a business card to larger than a greeting card, never too large to be distributed by hand, are the equivalent for contemporary club music. The cheerful, home-cooked visual parody and appropriation enabled by electronic media--"Come to where the flavor is," reads one Berlin handout reproduced here--have spawned a whole new genre, akin to the electronic music it often advertises. These flyers, examples of which range over 20 years on more than 600 pages, are at once art, advertising, branding and community building, and they reflect the fashion, music, art, politics, news, graphics and literature of their eras. FlyerSoziotope is the world's largest catalogue of them, and it illustrates the entire spectrum of a new media culture with work from Europe and around the world. Editor Mike Riemel, who studied economics, planning and urban sociology, put his education to use by founding Berlin's Foto-Shop gallery and the Internet radio station, Klubradio, which webcasts from clubs in Berlin. He has marshaled more than a dozen writers whose essays take closer looks, both academic and entertaining, at aspects of the medium's development, its success and its future.
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