beyond tellerrand is wonderfully intimate and excessively personal, I can really meet people there and talk properly. And the speakers span the entire spectrum, from the technical to the artistic, from the corporate to the individual.
When I started beyond tellerrand in 2010 and ran the first edition in Düsseldorf, I always had in mind, how important breaks are between talks. At least for me. I think breaks are maybe as important as the presentations at an event. I mean, two days of talks with so much input. Without breaks, my brain would simply overflow and would never be able to process everything that I have just heard and seen. Therefore we have at least a small 15-minute break after each talk and mostly even 30 minutes and the lunch break is 2 hours long usually. Those breaks are useful, so that people can refresh themselves, get a drink or coffee and surely also to meet people – fostering existing connection and making new friends is important also. But instead of just offering a bar and a coffee booth I always thought it would be nice to create a space where delegates would be able to explore new things, chat to our partners and meet friends of beyond tellerrand.
Before each event, I have many conversation with our partners (this is how I call our sponsors as it is more a partnership than a sponsorship only) about that the booth at beyond tellerrand shouldn’t be a “standard trade fair booth”, but something targeting the actual audience. The attendees mostly know those companies or agencies anyways and want to chat with them, gain insights, but not find themselves in a sales pitch. I usually ask the partner, if a table or desk, which usually is a physical barrier between them and the people they want to speak to, really is needed. Instead I advise to create an inviting, open space, where people feel invited to come in to. Mostly the people you speak to and who are responsible for event sponsorship and the onsite booth are super happy to learn about your audience and get some advise on what fits best for the people attending. You help them doing their work, you know? ;)
Next to the partners, who really always give their best to listen and do something nice, I invite friends to the event who want to show their work to the attendees. Designers, artists, makers … those who also speak at beyond tellerrand. For Berlin this will be people like Steffen Mumm (aka Hoker One), who designed everything for the Berlin in 2017 already and is going to bring some work. He will be joined by Johannes Ehemann, a former ice hocker professionell who has chosen to become an artist and leave his ice hocker career behind. The Buchstabenmuseum Berlin is coming and I am excited to see what they bring! Next to that our long-time friends from p98a – Hacking Gutenberg are part of the Berlin show again and said they gonna even bring something to print on this time! (In case you are interested in letter press printing – we have a workshop in Berlin coming up. Skate-Aid is there again with their booth and everything you buy in their popup shop is directly doing good things and will be used to empower kids. You only need to be quick before I buy all the things at their booth (the new edition of the limited Vans for Skate-Aid for example). A couple of speakers also are going to bring artwork. So far I know of Shirley Wu, Rob Draper and Niels Kiené (aka Salventius) who are going to exhibit (and probably sign and sell) their work.
I created a dedicated page to introduce anyone who is part of the exhibition in Berlin. As you can see, beyond tellerrand is “not only” a conference. ;)
Oh … and if you still don’t have a ticket:
I am looking forward to seeing you there!