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II: Dream Life

III: Paintings As Prayers

IV: Late Summer Evening

POETRY

Rose Crowned Evenings

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The Personalised Circus

Berlin Undressing

Blind Children On Western Streets

Lucifer Says He Won't See Me

Say

Absentee Note

Boy

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The Insurance Was WILD

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The Disappointed Prince

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The Catch

Chekhov In Kreuzberg

A Stolen Dress

Two Contract Killers Get Arrested

My Uncle Dick

Death In The Cafe

Performing To The Curtain

Getting Past The Curtain

OTHER

La Traviata

Babylon Berlin

Living With Samuel Beckett:

An Anti Essay

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BABYLON BERLIN

 

December 2016

Collaboration with photographer Pascal Boehme

 

Look at these photos of people in Berlin. Who do they think they are?

That’s not a joke: it’s Pascal’s primary concern out here in Berlin.

In this exhibition we see the three same characters: the camera, the subject and Berlin. Pascal himself is hardly there. He was there, just now by Warschauerstr. There was that fleeting moment of flash. He saw us (maybe we saw him), he took the photograph and now we see it on the wall. But what do we see? Childish innocence? Undercover courage? Predictable narcissism? Of our concerns, Pascal cares and he also doesn’t care, he is empathetic and remorseless. Yes, he admires the aesthetics of our masks, of the personas we provide, of the admittedly desperate service we give of ourselves to him – but as a playwright would with characters in a play, he ultimately leaves us alone with our roles – he too is passive amidst all the confusion over our desired identities, and must now move on. He’s down the Neukolln sidestreets, or perhaps lost in Mitte, where real things are supposedly happening. The masses can evidently be seen, and they somehow manage to convince us of their perpetual state of revolt and harmony. Some are lined up in protest, others reside blissfully in the grey Berlin sun, in Gorlitzer Park. Yet even in Pascal’s flashes of reality, there’s a strange show going on, whether it is of the person’s choice or not. Clearly, this is not just about photography. This is about us, and our roles in this show out here in Berlin, 2016. The anonymous are given centre-stage, and it is obvious that while they may not be posing for the camera, they are posing for something, and quite committedly playing their role in Berlin as best as they can. In between photographs we can hear even Pascal ask himself: what’s actually going on in this city?

This exhibition is called Babylon, the ‘Gate of God’ - but we are in Berlin, 2016, Gate of Self. We can see this by just looking at these four walls. Since 2015, this city has been Pascal’s arena of choice. He is relatively new to this field: time was spent in Rome and India, and their respective spiritual and cultural traits can be glimpsed in the works here, somehow managing to leave an almost religious, contemplative tone to that most ephemeral of cities, Berlin.

 

Look around. Look at these people. Look past some of their dirty glamour, their admirable squalor, their deliberate or misguided loneliness and their pleasant camaraderie and misunderstood love, and see that perhaps the starring role in this dialogue actually belongs to the city itself.

Pascal intends to sit back, to observe and then flash – flash.

 

For more photography by Pasal Boehme, click here