Aram Dikiciyan







-tell us about your background.

I was born and raised in west Berlin – at that time an island of freedom surrounded by communist East Germany. There was a sense of isolation, but also pride. Overall, it was a comfortable place to be.

During the 80s I got into the skateboarding and graffiti scene inspired by heros like Christian Hosoi, Mike Vallely, Natas Kaupas and Ray Barbee.

My graffiti antics ended abruptly after losing my canvas – and perpetual playground – the Berlin Wall. Of course I maintained an interest in hip hop culture, as well as skateboarding, but found myself getting more and more into snowboarding at that time.

I would travel to the mountains of Switzerland, Austria, what was then Czechoslovakia and France almost every weekend. Later, in the 90s, I started surfing which became my major passion and which I have stuck with ever since.

The path to becoming a photographer came during my time as an editor at Lodown …

-tell us about Lodown times

A few friends of mine came together to create Lodown Magazine in late 96.

My old friend graphic designer Thomas Marecki aka Marok, fresh from his success with the Superlo 8 movie, was the publisher, with Marley Fabisiewicz, Alexander Flach aka Axel Foley, Stefan Batsch aka Skism and a whole bunch of freelance editors and contributors involved.

It was quite a posse.

I’m very proud of what we did: introducing fresh material from street art to bmx, skate and snowboarding, street fashion, graphic design and music.

Shooting legends such as Chad Muska, Arthur Baker, Jazzy Jeff, Babu or the Mighty Crown – summer-camp sessions with the Burton or Volcom team. Adidas/Y3, Nike, Vans, Eastpak, Spiewak… those brands were committed to the project.

Hip Hop was on the speakers. Meeting artists like Kostas Serimetis, Futura 2000, Kaws, Delta and Eric Haze was very cool. It was a lot of fun, a creative time. Lodown was a huge influence and instilled a deep interest in fashion and art.

-tell us about your berlin

Over the years many things have changed and i’m not sure anymore what my Berlin really is or what it has become. Of course I was very into subculture … was having a lot of fun after the wall came down.

East Berlin was a thrilling adventure playground. Very exciting and full of freedom. I have great memories of my time living in Kreuzberg close to the old border.

Berlin is definitely a great place, but I feel more comfortable living in Tokyo now.

-tell us about your tokyo

My Tokyo pretty much consists of Aoyama, Shibuya and Nakameguro. I only make occasional excursions into the rest of the city. It’s so vast.

Those areas represent an amazing concentration of creativity – very stimulating. It feels very cold-hearted sometimes, but the role of “outsider” gives you a fascinating perspective on life.