Review

André
Kirchner

Berlin: The City's Edge 1993/94

To mark the 30th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, the Berlinische Galerie is to premiere a special collection from its holdings. For his series “Stadtrand Berlin” (1993/1994), the acclaimed photographer André Kirchner (*1958) took pictures of the reunited city along its historical border.

Schwarz Weiß Fotografie von André Kirchner
© André Kirchner; Repro: Anja Elisabeth Witte

The geographical starting-point was the former border crossing at Drewitz. Kirchner chose a perspective looking inwards on the city from outside. Moving anti-clockwise from March 1993, within a year he had reached Glienicker Brücke, a bridge on the other side of Potsdam. The 60 separate shots construct a view of the periphery of Greater Berlin within the 234-km boundary defined in 1920, when other parishes were absorbed into the city, which corresponds roughly to its current footprint.

Kirchner’s panoramas subtly expose traces of 100 years of urban history. The series, documentary in design, features not only relics of the Berlin Wall but also farmsteads indicating a rural lifestyle, long avenues, factory ruins left behind by advancing 20th-century industrialisation, and modern-day satellite communities.

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