This past weekend BFA’s took their first flight together to Berlin, Germany. The city was a hit among us all, filled with artistic and young people and places. We happened to be in the city at time of equal celebration and sorrowful remembrance: 30 years since the Berlin Wall fell. It was extremely special to visit the East Side gallery which is a mile of street art done on one of the remaining parts of the wall at this time. Illustrating the confusing times that have followed the fall, we actually encountered a neo-Nazi rally fought on the other side by anti-Nazi protest shouting “go home Nazis”.
We saw art—LOTS of it, from ancient Egyptian relics to pure contemporary wackiness and everything in between. The first night we visited the studio of Danish-Icelandic artist Olafur Eliasson at which 100 designers, architects and artists bring monumental projects to life. We were toured by a current employee and Cornell AAP alum Michelle Chen. Many of us were inspired by experiencing the type of place we would like to work someday, for others the operation felt too technical; either way it was a space that I have never encountered before, so much creation from realizations of geometry to re-imaging facades of skyscrapers to paintings and sculpture. My favorite part of that visit was discovering the converted brewery had I a studio dedicated purely to water coloring.
The next day we visited Berlin’s Museum Island which (problematically) houses the bust of Nefertiti at the Pergamom. In the few hours we were allotted I was able to visit the Pergamom and the Alte Nazionale. In the latter, I was floored by impossibly gorgeous and inspiring impressionist’s paintings, from Monet, Degas, Renoir etc., including the most magnificent painting I think I’ve ever seen; of course, I didn’t get the name! I have it pictures below but the pictures are offensively inadequate. I have never seen so much color harmoniously created such magic on a canvas.
After paying our respects to the old masters, we set course for the Hamburger Banhof museum of Contemporary art. Here there was an exhibition inspired by Hieronymus Bosch’s Triptych Garden of Heavenly Delights, featuring the middle panel of the painting; I had ever seen a Bosch in real life and I will never forget that moment.
written by: Margaret Groton
Street Art from East Side Gallery/ Berln Wall photgraphy by: Margaret Groton