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This collection of photographs documents the Berlin Wall and its art six months before its fall.
















BWA Photographed in May of 1989, this collection has been acclaimed as the last and most complete record of the social, political, and artistic expressions of the wall surrounding the city of West Berlin.
BWA The wall itself started as an overnight barbed wire creation in August of 1961. It resulted from the constant disputes of the “East” and “West” over the status of Allied occupied Berlin and Germany. It came to symbolize the Cold War and was the most “concrete” expression of the Iron Curtain that existed throughout the period. It evolved into the sophisticated security system of concrete walls, electric fences, guard towers, and no-man’s land depicted in the photographs.
BWA The art of the wall was a product of the eighties when the wall was reconstructed with prefabricated concrete slabs 14 feet high. This provided a perfect canvas for the artists of the dynamic international community of West Berlin. The artists were soon joined by the multitude of visitors to the wall in creating the potpourri of art, graffiti, and messages for which the wall became the focus. The resulting colorful expressions on the West side of the wall were in sharp contrast to the East’s sterile ramparts and came to symbolize the differences of the separate societies. On one side the free expression of the open society of West Berlin, while on the other was the blank walls of the repressed society that was East Berlin.
pic4 The photographer, Edward Murray, studied in West Berlin in the early seventies and was prompted to undertake this documentation by his belief that the absurdity of this medieval concept would soon succumb to the realities of a modern world. His photographs capture the beauty and tragedy of what was one of the most bizarre situations of the twentieth century.The collection consists of over 800 35mm color slides photographed in May of 1989 which have been put in digital format. Additional photos were taken in May of 1990 after the Wall had been partially dismantled and will be posted at a later date.



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