Annett Gröschner and Arwed Messmer - Aus Anderer Sicht/The Other View

  • New
  • Bound in a special 'open softcover' technique, 752 pages, 23 colour, German & English text
  • Published by Hatje Cantz, 2011

A collection of photographs of the early stages of the erection of the Berlin Wall, edited by Annett Gröschner and Arwed Messmer. Essays by Greg Bond, Olaf Briese, Florian Ebner, Matthias Flügge, Annett Gröschner, Arwed Messmer. Graphic design by Carsten Eisfeld.

It was not until the seventies that the Berlin Wall started looking like the white concrete swath that has been burned into collective memory. Before that, it consisted of brick walls, dog patrol areas, and barbed wire fences. Around 1965/66, soldiers from the East German border patrol took pictures of the inner-city wall over a length of about forty kilometers, producing more than one thousand views of West Berlin.

Photographer Arwed Messmer (1964 in Schopfheim) digitally reconstructed these images to create about three hundred panoramas, and writer Annett Gröschner (1964 in Magdeburg) supplied them with captions. Supplementing these captioned photos are portraits of soldiers, snapshots, and reports of escape attempts, which together recall everyday occurrences along the border. Contributions on the architecture and metamorphosis of the Wall over time, its literary treatment, as well as on the importance of the project for the history of photography throw light on the fascinating worlds of associations of a structure that symbolizes the perversions of the twentieth century like no other.

The project is supported by the Federal Archives, the German Federal Cultural Foundation, and the Federal Foundation for the Reappraisal of the SED Dictatorship. The book Aus Anderer Sicht/The Other View is bound in a special 'open softcover' technique which allows the opened book to lie flat. To this purpose its end leaf has only been partially glued to the cover. This is no binding mistake! Listed in Parr/Badger volume 3.

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