I was treated to a weekend in Berlin to celebrate my big three-oh (dear!)
What a fantastic city to photograph – history, great architecture, the contemporary art scene, inspiring galleries and really friendly people.
The highlight for me was the dome at the Reichstag designed by Norman Foster. It was an amazing structure – you could see right down into the plenary chamber of the German parliament. Not only is the architecture awesome but the audio guide provided a great panoramic tour of the city as you spiral up the dome (and it’s free!!)
We visited the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe, completed in December 2004. Its stark nature left me very cold – perhaps fitting for its purpose.
I also enjoyed visiting Tacheles – a derelict building covered in graffiti, home to artists working and exhibiting in the space. A new twist on our typical art galleries, I found it particularly interesting having just written for my Masters course on the influence of the institution of the museum and gallery on today’s art world…
The “East side gallery” is a remaining part of the Berlin wall where artists are welcomed to paint a section.
There’s a real variety of themes going on. Here’s my favourite….
In contrast, the Hamburger Bahnhof gallery was a typical white cube space but with less than typical works of art! It really did push the boundaries of modern art, including a video of a man continually screaming (!). For me, seeing Warhol’s Mao was a real treat. Naively, having only seen it on the internet previously, I had no idea how big and imposing it would be and as I used to pass the picture of Mao in Tiananmen Square on my way to work in Beijing it brought back many memories of communist China.
And finally just a few more shots for the tourists amongst us…