Verena Spilker lived in Hamburg, Germany until graduating from high school in 2000. In 1997 she attended high school in California, USA for one semester. She studied Cultural Anthropology, Politics, Spanish and Russian at the Universities of Göttingen and Leipzig and finished her M.A. with honours in 2010.

Recognizing a lack of queer and female visibility in the places she’s lived in, and determined to change that, she’s initiated and organized one-off events, festivals, and event series in Göttingen, Leipzig and Berlin. Since moving to Berlin in 2009 she has collaboratively published Make Out Magazine, an independent queer-feminist magazine that existed until 2015, and established Transnational Queer Underground as an online platform for information on queer artistic life around the world. Her weekly radio show balm&creak had it’s 15th anniversary at Stadtradio Göttingen in May 2017.

Verena speaks German and English fluently, and has a working knowledge of Russian, Hungarian, Spanish and Ukrainian.

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Waterbear Mediendesign

During her time at University she taught herself HTML, CSS and Java Script and has been working as a freelance web designer since 2004, finally founding her own company, Waterbear Mediendesign, in 2015. She works for individual clients as well as bigger foundations where she provide project based websites. She also donates her time and web design skills to support interesting projects that lack the means to hire a web designer.

If you are a queer and/or feminist project/person and need a website or print media, please get in touch. The website for her business is in German, but if you have any inquieries just send an email to verena [at] waterbear . de or use the contact form on this website.

Visit Page: www.waterbear.de

Transnational Queer Underground

What is Transnational Queer Underground?

The name Transnantional Queer Underground is a reference to the International Pop Underground Convention, a festival that was held in 1991 in Olympia, Washington. The first day of the festival was called Girls Night and a lot of the early Riot Grrrl and Queercore bands played there. It was a kind of landmark and starting point for women in independent music, a scene that is male dominated to this day. Coming from the suburbs myself, Riot Grrrl and their critique of a male domination and an oppressive capitalist system was something that I could relate to, even though I only found out about the movement much later. And the idea of how queercore came into existence through two punk kids (Bruce LaBruce and GB Jones) that didn’t feel at home in either the punk scene or the gay scene and therefore just decided to create their own thing has definetly inspired me in becoming actively involved in making zines, djing, organizing and creating the things I think are missing.

So Transnational Queer Underground was born out of the the frustration that most English speaking media is dominated by western, mostly American ideas and standarts, and that it is very hard to find anything about the amazing work people are doing in other parts of the world.

Visit page: www.transnational-queer-underground.net

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balm and creak logobalm&creak is a music radio show that is broadcasted in Göttingen and its surrounding areas once a week for an hour. Verena has founded balm&creak with Jana in 2002 and is currently moderating balm&creak with Mareike from Berlin. You can stream the show Wednesdays from 7-8pm and there is also a Mixcloud with selected shows for you to listen to.

Visit page: www.balmandcreak.de