Tag: Berlin

The Nowaks’

Collected Items 01.08.13

I pushed open the door and, in doing so, jarred the handle of the frying pan on the stove which stood just behind it. In the tiny kitchen there was barely room for the two of us together. A stifling smell of potatoes fried in cheap margarine filled the flat.

The living room had a sloping ceiling stained with old patches of damp. It contained a big table, six chairs, a sideboard and two large double-beds. The place was so full of furniture that you had to squeeze your way into it sideways.

I descended slowly the five flights of stairs to the courtyard. The bottom of the court was clammy and dark, although the sun was shining on a cloud in the sky overhead. Broken buckets, wheels off prams and bits of bicycle tyre lay scattered about like things which have fallen down a well.

Christopher Isherwood, Goodbye To Berlin (Penguin: Harmondsworth, [1939] 1958) pp. 102-106.

Unter Construction

On Urbanism 13.01.13

Thanks to BVG’s U5 extension project, Unter den Linden (is this Europe’s most lovely street name?) is currently peppered with hoardings, pipes, tanks, temporary pedestrian sanctuaries, temporary traffic barriers and all manner of other markers of ongoing construction. In addition, many buildings along the grand boulevard seem to be undergoing winter facelifts, and so are shielded by great walls of scaffolding and modesty wraps printed with their own likenesses. The impression, then, as we walked from Französische Straße past Bebelplatz and on towards Museum Island, was of a city partially cocooned. The metamorphosis that this ‘cocoon’ implies is at the heart of what makes great cities sublime – constant change, for better or for worse, in all quarters visible and invisible.

Berlin Construction Humboldt University

Berlin Construction Bebelplatz

Berlin Construction

Berlin Construction

Berlin Construction

Berlin Construction