Gabber goes global – revealing the international side of Hardcore
Gabber in Melkweg Expo during ADE 2017
Gabber, the Rotterdam-born subculture, lives as never before. With the Hardcore-inspired collection of Dior, DJ Paul Elstak return to the top of the music charts. And with the 25th anniversary of Thunderdome, Hardcore is more relevant than ever. Gabber grows, not only in the Netherlands but also internationally. Photographer and artist Boris Postma, a Gabber fan of the first hour, followed the phenomenon to Italy and Japan, where he observed and photographed the Gabber community. The result is Planet Core, exhibited during ADE, from 18 to 22 October, at Melkweg Expo in Amsterdam.
Gabber is the black sheep of the Dutch music family. A total outsider, Gabber is anti-culture, a pain in the ass of the mainstream. Gabber is crude, bold and raw. Gabber is fooling around. Gabber is pain. Gabber is steel. But Gabber is also unconditional companionship, love and affiliation – honor, pride and honesty. Gabber is family.
Since the creation of Gabber in the 1990s, the phenomenon has become one of the largest rave subcultures in the world. It has spread internationally under the name Hardcore (the name of the accompanying music genre). In addition to Johan Cruijff, Rembrandt and tulips, this grim subculture is one of the most successful export products from The Netherlands. Wherever it arises it forms a fanatic fan base, tightly connected and with dedication solid as concrete. Groups and subcultures with a recognizable hardcore identity pop up everywhere, blending with the national visual language. And remarkably, the Netherlands, in particular Rotterdam, is the Mecca for Hardcore lovers.
Artist and photographer Boris Postma experienced Gabber like few others. He sought Gabbers in Japan and Italy and was included in their local scenes. He ate, slept and hakte (the accompanying dance) with his new Gappies, and recorded their lives and love for Gabber and Hardcore in a nuanced manner. Not only did he focus on the sometimes extreme and sensational visual identity of this subculture, but he also witnessed everyday life, affection, love and care for each other. The resulting photo and installation exhibition is Planet Core in Melkweg Expo.
This is the first show ever dedicated exclusively to the international dimensions of Gabber and Hardcore. Controversially, it takes place in the Dutch capital Amsterdam and not in Rotterdam. At the same time, it is a first sign that Gabber and Hardcore are seen for what they are worth: a lasting cultural form with global dimensions, perhaps similar in function, power and scope to Rock'n Roll in the fifties.
Boris Postma was first fascinated by Gabber in the mid-nineties. At the time it was a forbidden love that was literally experienced in secret. A no-go area of the environment in which he grew up. His love grew into a passion, which lasted for more than two decades. Meanwhile, Boris became an established name in the international Hardcore scene. He participated in exhibitions in Paris, Zurich and Toronto, researched the local Hardcore history for Art Rotterdam, functioned as a Gabber oracle for Nike and examined Hardcore elements for Vice and DJ Broadcast Magazine. In addition, he has contributed with pictures and articles to the Thunderdome jubilee book, which is yet to be released.
Wednesday 18 October at 19:00 is the opening of the exhibition, which consists of photographs and installations. Boris invited DJs Yoshiko (Italy) and Neodash Zerox (Netherlands) to provide the Hardcore soundtrack. The opening is free and open to all.
Planet Core - Boris Postma
18 to 22 October 2017
Wednesday 18 October at 19:00
Wed 18/10: 9:00 - 23:00
Thu 19/10: 10:00 - 23:00
Fri 20/10: 10:00 - 23:00
Sat 21/10: 10:00 - 23:00
Sun 22/10: 12:00 - 21:00