Sunny prospects
for the GDR:
photocollages
by Dieter Urbach

Dieter Urbach (*1935)

Dieter Urbach, Collage Palast der Republik, 1973
© Berlinische Galerie

Happy people strolling on the streets and squares of East Berlin, nifty cars driving down the road. Collages by Dieter Urbach (*1935) radiate a cheerful, almost urbane flair. This atmosphere was the means to an end, as the function of these works was to be persuasive. Commissioned by leading architects in the former GDR, they convey wishful thinking about a carefree life that at the same time sets a stage for the latest architectural designs – like the Palace of the Republic, one of several special projects for boosting Berlin’s profile as the capital of the GDR. Urbach’s life-like illustrations were initially intended for presenting ideas to government representatives, but before long his collages were being circulated by the state photo agencies. They could then be seen on big boards at public building exhibitions and in daily newspapers or trade journals.

Palast der Republik, Zeughaus, Point of view from Unter den Linden
1937
Collage
Silver gelatin paper, photo montage on cardboard
59,6 x 113 cm
Acquired with budgetary funding from the Berlinische Galerie, Berlin

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