Oct 17, 2018

The Berlin Diaries #10: The East Side Gallery.

It's always a bit sad coming to the end of the holiday snaps.

But at least the sun is finally shining here in Sydney.  Just the excuse I needed to start shopping for the summer ahead.  I found this $5 lobster beach towel at Kmart.  I'm sending it to school with Master SSG this Friday for swimming.  I wonder how it will all go, I hope everyone manages to get changed and then changed back again after swimming.  Feeling already for Master SSG's class teacher and her assistant.  14 boys to muster for one swimming class on a Friday afternoon....

And (I can't deny my excitement) the majors have begun stocking Christmas decorations.

My final instalment of Berlin photos is from a quick walk I took along the East Side Gallery.  As with everything else in Berlin, meticulously precise signs on the street direct you to the gallery from the train.  Warchauer Str station was the most convenient place for me to alight to access the gallery.

The East Side Gallery is an open-air gallery of artworks painted directly onto a 1316m long segment of the Berlin Wall.  It is a heritage listed landmark and it is free to view the gallery.

Artists from all over the world have contributed to the collection with the paintings first created in 1990 with a project initiated in 2009 to rehabilitate works that been damaged by graffiti or time.  As its name suggests, all the paintings are on the east side of the wall.

There's a sense of freedom, hope and new beginnings about the art.

The colour and imagery are uplifting and an ironic contrast to all that the wall stood for when it was intact.

Aside from the immediate context of the paintings in the unified Berlin and Germany, the images of spoke of themes and ideas that are relevant to the world at large.

Some segments of the wall begged to be touched and experienced literally.

I couldn't resist doing a side profile selfie to mimic this painting.  Shame I forgot my selfie stick.

The East Side Gallery sits in the midst of an area undergoing intensive redevelopment.

The Mercedes Benz Arena overlooks a section of the gallery and new apartment blocks are going up literally alongside it.  There were plans to demolish a section of the wall to make way for the new buildings but that decision appears to have been overturned.  For now.

The abiding memory I have of Berlin is the surprise of things that always greeted me as I did something as simple as catching a train someplace and going for a little walk.  Your field of view is dynamic and diverse.  On one side of the street you might see a bridge, on the other the Berlin Wall and in the background to both will be the signs and symptoms of a modern city that is on a continual journey of healing, progressing and never forgetting.

I usually buy myself a little nick nack as a souvenir from the cities I visit but I struggled with Berlin because nothing I saw really captured how I feel about this amazing city that I grew to love more than I thought I would.  The souvenirs I have of Berlin are all in my head, heart and in the photo folder on my computer.

Until next time, Berlin.  And thank you.

1 comment:

  1. I noticed xmas displays at the garden centre here at the weekend. hashtag - tooearly


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