23. ilb 06. – 16.09.2023
Portrait Danielle de Picciotto
© Tina Winkhaus

Danielle de Picciotto

Danielle de Picciotto was born in the USA in 1965 and now lives and works as a musician and multimedia artist mainly in Berlin. She is a painter, illustrator, video artist and curator. In addition to all this, she makes music with her husband, Alexander Hacke, bassist with the band Einstürzende Neubauten. She has been influencing Berlin’s independent art scene since the eighties. She was the singer in the Space Cowboys at the beginning of the nineties, set up the »Ocean Club« as a forum for art and music as well as the gallery »Das Institut« and also played a significant role in the city’s club culture. Together with her former partner, Dr. Motte, she organised the first Love Parade and has worked in many of Berlin’s most in clubs. »In the years following the fall of the Berlin Wall, a barkeeper enjoyed almost the same status as a pop star«, she wrote in her Berlin memoirs »The Beauty of Transgression« (2012). It was considered an honour to work in a popular club. The fact that musicians and artists worked behind the bar created »an insider reputation that lasted for years«. She has repeatedly toured with her husband and has given concerts worldwide, for example with the joint adaptation of Sebastian Brant’s »Das Narrenschiff« (tr. Ship of Fools). She has also worked on several occasions on projects commissioned by the German Federal Foreign Office making film clips about cultural and historical subjects, She has been a member of Crime and the City Solution since 2012, where she is a background singer and does video installations for the band.

Danielle de Picciotto entered the realm of graphic diary with the illustrated travelogue, which was released at the beginning of 2012 titled »We are Gypsies Now«. In it, she documents with ink drawings her one-and-a-half year travels with her husband, which they embarked upon in 2010. Black and white drawings that take up an entire page and often framed by playful patterns show the stops they made along the way in Vienna, Prague, Mexico and various cities in the USA. Danielle de Picciotto sometimes portrays the people they encountered, sometimes sketches the floor plan of the place they were staying at, while other times she draws the cityscapes or landscapes. »This very personal travelogue is a graphic novel – and offers everything you get from a novel as well«, is how one critic from Bavarian radio station, Bayerisches Rundfunk, put it. She has also developed a show with her husband, Alexander Hacke, which brings together pictures from the travelogue and music in a stage performance.


The Beauty of Transgression

A Berlin Memoir

Der Gestalten Verlag

Berlin, 2012

We Are Gypsies Now

Der Weg ins Ungewisse


Berlin, 2013