Frank Künster

“I am Frank Künster, and it’s difficult to explain what I do.” Frank is the living legend of Berlin. Today he would describe himself as an artist, who builds social sculptures. Through his work, he influences people to behave in a different way towards him and towards each other. And he has been doing that for quite some time, first by working as a bouncer and today by managing one of the most popular bars in Berlin.

Photography by Fidelis Fuchs

Frank, you are the epitome of Berlin! Describe to me what the city is for you?

For me, Berlin is the last free city where I can express myself as I wish. I have been living here for 31 years and I’ve seen the development of the city from the time The Wall came down. And I travel a lot which allows me to compare. Let me tell you, Berlin is the only place in the world, which has the metropolitan feeling with a strong cultural identity without the economical pressure that you can experience in cities like NY, London, Paris, Moscow and Beijing. As the wall came down, I didn’t want to be in other big cities where I was before. I want to be as free as possible and participate as much as possible in the cultural life. And all of this is possible in Berlin. Berlin is affordable and on top of that comes the heritage from the socialist government of the GDR. A lot of people living in Berlin have their rules still rooted from the socialistic world in a positive way. And you can see that in the nightlife very much. Cool clubs in other cities require you to be a member or buy a table. Here, it’s not possible to buy that credibility! In Berghain, you will have to queue.

Photography by Fidelis Fuchs
Photography by Fidelis Fuchs

In your mind, are there specific women that you think play an important role in Berlin and in Germany?

One woman is Eilika von Anhalt, she is a princess. Don’t be surprised but, Catherine the Great was one of her Grand Aunts. She is doing a lot of educational and non-governmental initiatives for young people. She has achieved a lot and will achieve even more, I am certain of it. Anita Tillmann is behind Premium Group, which runs fashion events. Although I haven’t been that much into fashion, I still think it’s important that women empower themselves and show that leading a business is not only for men. And I think Anita is doing a really good job at this.

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