altes_finanzamt_headerAltes Finanzamt is one of the best kept secrets of Neukölln. Though it’s hard to find and though the logic according to which the opening days are fixed may not seem evident, it’s cozy and friendly inside. You can get Portuguese wine or beer, usually served with lupines - which have nothing to do with Spanish tapas - while you listen to experimental music or to a reading.

Filament Stanza is an anagram of “Altes Finanzamt” and the title given to a monthly literary event. It is curated by Mário Gomes, Jochen Thermann, Eirik Sördahl, Joana Bértholo and John Holten. Apart from readings, “Filament Stanza” proposes literary duels, writing marathons and scenic literary performances.

Jochen Thermann lives in the wrong neighbourhood in Berlin. In winter he therefore spends a lot of his time looking out of the window of the Ringbahn to Neukölln, thinking about the poetry of the goals that Borussia Dortmund has scored this season. Now he is riding his bicycle again. To make a professional appearance he has published a book on Kafka’s animals suggesting a metaphorical model of the mind. He writes texts for Netzreporter and talks about history on Montagsradio. Among others, he pleads guilty for the invention of Philosophical Football. Together with Mario Gomes, Eirik Sördahl, Joana Bertholo and John Holten he is in charge of Filament Stanza, a monthly night of literature at Altes Finanzamt that he warmly recommends.

Joana Bértholo still denies she lives in Berlin after 4 years and many pauses - Buenos Aires, Lisbon, London, Marseille. She was born in Lisbon in 1982, studied Visual Arts and Design, ran marathons and played at being a professional triathlete most of her teenage years, and only payed writing any attention when her silly ramblings started getting awarded. She has published a novel, a compilation of stories, many other short stories in different media, and a script for comics. She insists her next novel as well as her PhD dissertation is about the topic of “Shadows” - though nobody else agrees. more or less:

Mário Gomes still has not decided, whether to write his name with an accent on the <a> or not. The version with the accent would be the Portuguese one, the version without it, a German or rather international spelling. Whenever he dedicates to academic work, he avoids the accent. In the credits of his films, he usually appears as “Mário” with an <á>. To avoid excessive reflexion about this question, he makes up new names to stand as the authors of his literary publications. He is a Philosophical Football referee, one of the co-founders of Altes Finanzamt in Neukölln, where he organizes the monthly literary night along with Jochen Thermann, Eirik Sördahl, Joana Bértholo and John Holten.

i like to kiss and tell…”