East Side Gallery Murals Restored 20 Years After Berlin Wall Falls

East Side Gallery, Berlin Wall

"Many small people, 
who in many small places, 
do many small things, 
can alter the face of the world."

BERLIN — There's a three-quarter mile stretch of concrete in Berlin that has become an international memorial for freedom. The east side of the Berlin Wall is adorned with approximately 100 colorful murals painted by artists from all over the world. Originally painted in 1990 to brighten the bleak, gray facade, the so-called East Side Gallery, is the largest open-air gallery in the world; it has been newly restored in commemoration of the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall (Nov. 9, 1989).

"Every (artist) had his own perceptions on the fall of the wall," Mayor Klaus Wowereit said at an inauguration ceremony. "I think this international nature, these different points of view and this variety are a secret of the success of this great open-air exhibition."

Over the last two decades, the East Side Gallery has faced its share of damage from the elements, graffiti and looters. But throughout the past year, a majority of the original artists have returned to repaint their previous works. "Twenty years after the fall of the wall, the East Side Gallery stands for democracy and human rights," said Kani Alavi, head of the East Side Gallery Artists' Association.

On November 9, Germany will hold a "Festival of Freedom" during which 1,000 giant foam dominoes will symbolically be toppled along the route of the wall, culminating in a display of fireworks.

[Photo: Left - Dmitri Vrubel. Painting #25. Right - Thierry Noir. Painting #62.]


No comments:

Related Posts with Thumbnails