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Eiko Grimberg

Was part of: exp. 1

Eiko Grimberg

Born 1971 in Karlsruhe, DE – lives and works in Berlin, DE, and Leipzig, DE

Examining shifts in ideology and politics through architecture, Eiko Grimberg uses photography to make visible the meandering topography of the ruins that surround us. After World War II the destroyed royal Berlin Castle was torn down by the GDR. The image corresponds to Eva Kemlein’s 1950 documentation of the demolition. The poster by Grimberg is a tribute to Kemlein, a Jewish photographer who survived the war in exile and in hiding, and who resettled in the GDR where she photographed the destruction of what many considered a symbol of Prussian imperialism. In its place the GDR constructed its iconic Palast der Republik [Palace of the Republic], “a building for the people” inaugurated in 1976, which housed not only the parliament but also a huge cultural center. The facilities included a bowling alley, a discotheque, and a great concert hall. As a counterpoint, on the other side of the poster, what we don’t see are images of the 2013 ceremonial setting of the foundation stones of what would become one of the most polemic mega-projects of reunified Berlin. The new Berlin Castle will house the Humboldt Forum, bringing together several collections of non-European history, which has sparked a debate around issues of restitution.

List of works

Rückschaufehler (Protokoll) [Hindsight Bias (Protocol)], 2013, offset print, photo: Eva Kemlein, 1950, Brandenburgisches Landesamt für Denkmalpflege und Archäologisches Landesmuseum, private collection, Berlin

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