gentle rain – Issue 1
“gentle rain – and other reasons to love Hamburg” is Hamburg’s first English-language city magazine. It covers what life is like in a shared urban space, shows how young Hamburg citizens live and work, and explores creative hives and retreats in the city and its immediate surroundings.
gentle rain captures the tensions and contradictions arising from living together in an urban environment – and at the same time focusses on the enormous creative potential of major cities like Hamburg. Each issue covers the ways in which young Hamburgers live and work, and goes to the places of work surrounding them. That may be the drone start-up in the Oberhafen creative quarter, or the micro-boatyard on the banks of the Elbe at Wilhelmsburg.
One basic element of the editorial policy is to accompany protagonists with authentic narratives in words and images, affording readers a new view of the city. Furthermore, Hamburg journalists tackle topics and debates with relevance beyond the city limits. The first issue deals with the Hilldegarden project, specifically the greening of a World War II bunker by a citizens’ initiative. But, in doing so, it also investigates essential issues of sustainability, urban climate and local involvement in building projects, and outlines the conflicts in forming public space.
The experience of the residents of the Sternschanze district is also one shared by people in London’s Shoreditch or Copenhagen’s Vesterbro. They live in an inviting and appealing quarter – and one which is marketed as such – but whose attractiveness is based on something explicitly unmarketable, in this case an established neighbourhood and a centre of counter-culture.
Overall, the focus is on subjects that touch Hamburg and at the same time offer points of contact with the world beyond. This might be the opening of the Elbphilharmonie, but also the desire to occasionally flee the city and the everyday. The ways of looking at the world thus range from the objective to the personal, and encompass criticism and opinion. The content should give inspiration for the global challenge of living together in urban spaces, stimulate an exchange of ideas and, of course, show off the beautiful sides of Hamburg to the world.