This blog post has a double purpose:
- First, recommend you this excellent presentation about Steampunk by Marcus Rauchfuß.
- Second, express our gratitude to Marcus for his continuous support.
Marcus dedicated one of his podcasts to his lecturing experience at TU Dormund (Technische Universität Dortmund, Germany) in June 2013. As you probably know, he is one of the most active members of the Steampunk community, both in Germany and abroad: events organizer (as promoter of EuroSteamCon), blogger (some days ago we could celebrate the fifth anniversary of The Traveler’s Steampunk Blog, which we have previously recommended), author (Steampunk – kurz & geek, The Gatehouse Gazette, etc.). If you want to learn more about Marcus, you can simply read his profile at The Steampunk Museum and this interview of our brief interviews’ series ‘Steampunk jewelry tonight with…’.
As you probably know, the first EuroSteam Con took place on 29th September led by Marcus Rauchfuß from Vienna. Time runs fast and lots of things have happened in the last three weeks, but finally we are ready to share with you our experience in Madrid; well, more exactly at Ithilien pub, in Chapinería.
The commemorative events related to the EuroSteam filled a complete weekend, including a plethora of activities divided among a night party on Friday 28th and a fraternization lunch and party on 29th. Fields such as fashion, jewelry, literature or music were covered, trying to offer a wide insight into the Spanish Steampunk scene… and combined with performances, contests, expositions and round tables. The promoters of all this were The Golden Gear forum (the always supportive Sir Jack and Elizabeth Winchester and Josué Ramos) and the indomitable Ithilien pub crew.
The soirée went by as foreseen, with the only exception of the video streaming with our European brothers in arms. However we were in permanent touch with the Barcelona Steampunkers and other Spanish speaking friends such as El Investigador team in Mexico.
Irene and I were fortunate enough to participate in this enormous exaltation of the Steampunk genre. It all began with the recording of a preliminary video on 15th September, went on with the fashion catwalk on 28th (the models wore clothes from El Costurero Real, Lady Aguja and Lady Elizabeth Winchester matching with a selection of Decimononic jewels) and culminated with the exposition of some of our fine jewelry pieces at Ithilien the unforgettable evening of 29th.
1.- The interviewee
Marcus Rauchfuß is an anthropologist and a minor scholar of the Cthulhu Mythos and H.P. Lovecraft. Besides, he is also heavily into Steampunk and Dieselpunk: he collaborates with The Gatehouse, promotes EuroSteam and many, many other initiatives… and, by the way, loves travelling.
2.- The interview
Q.- Marcus, you live in Munich (Germany). Is this your birthplace?
A.- I actually live in Augsburg, I only work in Munich. My birthplace is not worth mentioning. I consider Nottingham in Great Britain to be my home town (I spent some of the best years of my life in Nottingham).
Q. What can you tell to our readers about the German Steampunk scene?
A.- The German Steampunk scene has been building steam (excuse the lame pun) in the last two – three years. We used to be few and far between but now there are gatherings (mostly in pubs) all over the place. I organise one in Augsburg on a monthly basis. There is also things going on in Mannheim and northern Hesse. The Hamburg area also has a very active scene and the first big German Steampunk Convention, Aethericus, is going to happen there in August
Q.- You are not precisely a newcomer to Steampunk. In fact, the first post of your English blog The Traveler’s Steampunk Blog is dated 1st July 2008? What ‘hooked’ you to Steampunk?
A.- That is actually a long story, so I try to make it short: As you can see on my blog, I have a thing for airships and zeppelins. I have been a zeppelin fan for as long as I can remember. But I actually joined the scene more or less by accident after reading about Abney Park on a gothic forum in early 2008.
Q.- If we are not wrong, you have been the main promoter of EuroSteam. How did you come up with the idea of organizing an event conceived to spread and strengthen Steampunk across the old continent?
A.- Well, I am friends with the sci-fi author Lavie Tidhar who has also written the Bookman series of steampunk books. One day Lavie and I had a conversation via Twitter and he suggested, Europe needed was a big steampunk convention, so I thought: OK, let’s do it!
Q.- There was a fund raising campaign, how do you think that it could have become more successful?
A.- More and better incentives/bonuses for donators, and I think in the current economic situation, most young people (i.e. those below 35) do not have that much money to donate. Also: We got very few donations from outside Europe, there was little interest from the international scene outside Europe for the fundraiser, although Evelyn Kriete helped promote it.
Q.- Would you say that EuroSteam has the potential to become the seed of a Steampunk European Network? Or could we be even more ambitious considering that the EuroSteam organization has been contacted by sympathizers from outside Europe?
1.- International Steampunk Day?
As you probably know, 14th June is considered the International Steampunk Day. I am writing this post due to an interesting exchange of ideas in Twitter that began with this tweet of Marcus Rauchfuß.
Disclaimer: I would like to clarify that I have tried to make a selection of tweets in order to make this post shorter and easier to read, all the related tweets are available in Twitter.
— Marcus R. (@Yithmas) June 14, 2012
Then Bruno Jiménez made a key question:
— Bruno Jiménez (@Noxbru) June 14, 2012
And I have to admit that my answer was not very accurate…