OSTZEIT - Finissage

[Translate to English:] © Thomas Meyer

On 13 September 2009 the OSTKREUZ exhibition "OSTZEIT - Stories from a vanished country" ended with a panel discussion entitled "The change in the perception of GDR life in today's collective memory" with photographers Sibylle Bergemann, Harald Hauswald and Thomas Hoepker (Magnum), writer Ingo Schulze and presenter Marion Brasch.
The audience was taken in by the fascinating stories the participants told about their lives in the GDR. Hoepker was the first West-German photo journalist to get an accreditation for the GDR. After initial difficulties he was warmly welcomed by a group of photographers led by Sibylle Bergemann, Arno Fischer, Ute and Werner Mahler and still today fondly recalls the circle of friends he was cordially admitted to.

The discussion has proved the special status OSTKREUZ photography holds in Germany and in the debate on the former GDR. Avoiding nostalgia, the exhibition presents an unadorned picture of GDR life. Even now that the pictures have long become historical documents, they successfully maintain their refusal to serve an ideology. They are still what they used to be: Subjective views on a special time in a special place. The pictures appeal to all viewers, regardless of whether they ever lived in the GDR, as they are still able to tell them something new about this vanished country.
Attracting 15,000 visitors, OSTZEIT is the most successful exhibition the Haus der Kulturen der Welt has ever hosted and the catalogue published by Hatje Cantz is also a great success. OSTKREUZ would therefore like to thank again all people involved for their commitment. All images © Julian Röder/OSTKREUZ


OSTZEIT - Presseschau

[Translate to English:] © Werner Mahler

Attracting 15 000 visitors, OSTZEIT – Stories from a vanished country, which ended a month ago, has been the most successful exhibition the Haus der Kulturen der Welt has ever hosted: Time to take a look back in the media. PRINT / ONLINE Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung FAZ taz - die tageszeitung Spiegel Tagesspiegel Berliner Zeitung dpa TIP art Photography now rbb Kulturradio Hessischer Rundfunk Nordkurier Südkurier


How To Make A Book With Steidl

[Translate to English:] © Tobias Kruse

The Idea
This book attempts that which is actually impossible: to capture an entire day in the life of a city. Twenty-four hours, from one sunrise to the next. That said, the book does not seek to reduce a day to simply a number of hours or minutes. Rather, a day consists of different moments that come into being when – for an instant – what was, what is, and what could be are revealed at the same time. When photography manages to record such moments, then the sense of time held within them is suspended, made permanent. That is the wish of this book, to stop time and to preserve it, and thereby to create a record for the future: to know how things once were, and how we once lived. All on a single September day in Berlin.

The City
Berlin is a fractured city. Its past is broken, divided and devastated. Its present is patchy and merciless. Its future unveils itself amongst empty lots and missing buildings. Like huge slabs, these periods of time are layered upon one another. In the blink of an eye, a gap can open up in which they all become visible – only for that gap to close up just as quickly. This is the landscape in which the inhabitants of Berlin live, work, dance, fail, hope, and die. A myriad of people, connected to one another because all they have experienced, are experiencing, and will experience, took place in this city. Everything at the same time, but everything at its own unique point in time.
The Photographers

After the fall of the Wall, seven photographers in Berlin founded the Ostkreuz Agency. ‘Ostkreuz’ is the name of a train station, from which one can set out in any direction. For the founders, the name denotes a place from which one can depart and where one can always meet again. Nineteen years later, the agency set out to rediscover and affirm its home city, and assembled thirty-six photographers to achieve that goal. On a September morning in 2008, these photographers ventured out into Berlin. Some followed specific people, others remained in particular places, others simply drifted. Each of them sewed his or her own thread through the city. From these threads a fabric eventually came into being, capturing that which is actually impossible: a day in the life of a city Marcus Jauer


"OSTZEIT - Stories from a vanished country"

[Translate to English:] © OSTKREUZ

Since the 15th of August OSTKREUZ is presenting the exhibition "OSTZEIT - Stories from a vanished country" at the Haus der Kulturen der Welt in Berlin. This exhibition is a collection of photographs by Sybille Bergemann, Harald Hauswald, Ute and Werner Mahler and Maurice Weiss, taken before and at the time of the fall of the Berlin wall; these images open up a window on their common roots and their individual perspectives of Germany's East.
Until now the exhibition is a huge success with over 10.000 vistors in the last three weeks and broad exposure in national and international media. We are very thankful for all the positive reaction we got from many different sites and for the ongoing discussion about the role of photography in the former GDR.
Therefore the exhibition will close with a panel discussion with Sybille Bergemann, Harald Hauswald, Thomas Hoepker (MAGNUM) and Ingo Schulze about the changing perception of everyday life in the former GDR on next Sunday, the 13th of September, at 7 pm. The entrance is free so please feel invited to come.


Joerg Brueggemann at Wacken festival

Once a year, heavy metal fans from all over the world gather at the festival in Wacken, North Germany. Maybe this time they will see a few familiar faces in the Metalheads exhibition at the Art Tent. For this project, Joerg Brueggemann photographed metal fans around the globe. Of course also in Wacken.

"Metalheads"
Exhibition: 1 - 4 August
Wacken Open Air



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