2009, Thu, Aug 13 — 2009, Sun, Sep 13


Stories from a Vanished Country

Photographer: Werner Mahler | Soccer fan 1.FC Union 1980 - Berlin Stadion der Weltjugend | © Werner Mahler/OSTKREUZ

Photographer: Werner Mahler | Soccer fan 1.FC Union 1980 - Berlin Stadion der Weltjugend | © Werner Mahler/OSTKREUZ

Sibylle Bergemann, Ute and Werner Mahler, and Harald Hauswald, four of the best-known East German photographers and the founders of OSTKREUZ agency, take us with their photographs to the country in which they lived. They show everyday life, work, and people of the GDR from their own subjective point of view. The photographs date from 1972 onward, and they offer an authentic and unadorned tale of a country that no longer exists but is preserved in these photographs.

In addition to the artists’ most important works—from Harald Hauswald’s observations of everyday life to Ute Mahler’s fashion photography and Sibylle Bergemann’s often decorated documentation of the building of the Marx-Engels monument on the forum of that name—other works from the final years of the German Democratic Republic are shown for the first time in this form. For example, in an early conceptual work, Sibylle Bergemann explored the P2 model apartment in the concrete slab buildings of East Berlin; Werner Mahler accompanied with his camera the students of one secondary school class from 1978 to the present in a reunited Germany; and Ute Mahler is presenting her impressions of May Day in 1980. The exhibition shows also photographs from the period of the fall of Communism by Maurice Weiss, a French photographer who became a member of OSTKREUZ agency in 1991, shortly after it was founded.

Thu 13.8. 19 h Opening
with Wolfgang Kil (critic and publicist)
Music by Gerry Franke and Max Graef

Sat 12.9. 20 h Film, Admission 5 Euro, concessions 3 Euro
Material by Thomas Heise
Previously unreleased film footage from the period during the fall of the Wall. A time-space-history with texts, images, stories, and memories assembled into a documentary masterpiece.

Sun 13.9. 19 h Finissage (Admission free)
What happened, didn’t happen that way
How the perception of GDR daily life has transformed in today’s collective memory: A panel discussion with Sybille Bergemann, Harald Hauswald, Thomas Hoepker (MAGNUM) and Ingo Schulze.
Moderator: Marion Brasch (Radio Eins)

The book, with texts by Wolfgang Kil, Markus Jauer, Alexander Osang and Ingo Schulze, will be published in the summer by Hatje Cantz Verlag:

Details: Photographs by Sibylle Bergemann, Ute Mahler, Werner Mahler, Harald Hauswald, Maurice Weiss, 150 B/W photographs, sizes: 24x30, 30x40, 40x50