December 12, 2014

Berlin Wonderland: Wild Years Revisited, 1990 – 1996

Yes, there was a time before Berlin became a city of the "Kreativitätsindustrie". Almost forgotten given the chic facades of Berlin's Mitte district nowadays. In the years right after the Wall came down in 1989 subcultures boomed in the abandoned ruins and streets where the border had divided the city into East and West. More than 200 black and white images on over 240 pages show how much Berlin-Mitte has changed since then. As David Wagner says in the preface: "They show the 'before'. The 'after' is visible in Mitte now, every day." So, it's great to have these photographs in this literally wonderful book.

I like the typeface a lot. It's Euclid Flex mixed-up (hidden, contrasted, dotted).

 Death strip in Northern Berlin, 1990, by Philipp von Recklinghausen

 Ernst-Thälmann-Park, 1993, by Rolf Zöllner

 "Mutoid Waste Company", Reichstag, 199,2 by Philipp von Recklinghausen and Hilmar Schmundt

"Berlin Wonderland" is the first publication by bobsairport, a photo agency run by Anke Fesel and Chris Keller. Visit the website to read more about the photographers and "protagonists" of Berlin's "wild years". The book is distributed by Gestalten. All interviews and quotes are in English and German. To purchase a copy click here or here.


The images above and below as well as the cover and many more are by Ben de Biel, co-founder of the "Ständige Vertretung" nightclub in "Tacheles" (below), member of the "Elektronauten" and part of the "IM Eimer" collective. In 1998 he founded the club "Maria am Ostbahnhof".