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Unter die Mauer - Berlin '84

The Berlin Wall stood from August 13, 1961 to November 9, 1989, a shade over 38 years. In 1984 I decided to visit Berlin to see what life felt like in the shadow of the wall - Die Mauer. At the time I prowled the streets of West Berlin (DDR) and crossed several times into East Berlin (GDR) taking photographs of what I saw. These ranged from landscapes to scenes of daily life and street portraits on both sides. None are posed.

Looking back at these pictures now feels like watching a silent movie. Moments in lives of strangers offer glimpses into living histories. These are moments under the shadow of the wall on both sides, at times mirroring shared experiences. In many ways, Berlin at that time was physically an island and locked in time. As for what drama portends or unfolds, I let these photos speak for themselves. But we now know that a mere five years later the wall would fall.

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