Visiting the East Side Gallery in Berlin was a highlight of our trip. The East Side Gallery is located at the Muhlenstrasse in Frederickshain - many of the photos included in my blog post #StreetArt & #Graffiti #Berlin were taken in this area. The East Side Gallery is free and public open at all times. From August 1961 to November 09, 1989 - the Berlin Wall enclosed West Berlin cutting through the city. Throughout the city, there are markers indicating where the wall stood.
Wall remnants remain throughout the city - at Potsdamer Platz for example.
Other wall remnants on display:
Thoughts following my visit to the East Side Gallery
Walls are barriers serving to keep people in or to keep the unwanted out. Barriers long thought as protective also create a numbing sense of isolation from ideas, life, and culture. Why does it seem that when a regime comes in the first thing they do is attack the cultural centers - museums, libraries, public art displays, street art, graffiti, theater, dance, or music. Artifacts are destroyed, laws are enacted to prohibit certain creative acts, censorship rises, and the tolerance for those who create decreases. Call me a mush brain but the symbolism of art placement on the Wall brought tears to my eyes. So much creativity alongside a historical remnant of barrier and isolation.
The shear volume of street art and graffiti in Berlin optimistically communicated to me that humans desire to create, they desire a vibrancy and the capacity to voice their inner thoughts. We will not be silenced - whether through street art, graffiti, poetry, music - whatever form it takes, we will not, cannot, and should not be silenced.
Berlin East Side Gallery Retrieved from http://www.eastsidegallery-berlin.de/data/eng/index-eng.htm
Berlin's East Side Gallery on film. Retrieved from http://www.dw.com/en/berlins-east-side-gallery-on-film/a-18175320
Berlin Wall Memorial. Retrieved from http://www.berliner-mauer-gedenkstaette.de/en/