Mosaic is the art of connecting broken pieces to form a new design. I use mosiacs to connect with the countries I live in, practicing and teaching the art to those around me to connect with people and enable others to connect with eachother.
Germany mosaic
Germany mosaic

Mosaic Discovery in Berlin

Today on a beautiful blue sky summer day I walked from Berlin Hauptbahnhof to Spittelmarkt – always along the Spree and later the Spree Kanal. It’s a wonderful walk that I could recommend every visitor of this vibrant city.

I was stepping through a lot of history of this city and my own life. Without intentionally looking for them I saw several mosaics on the way.

On Bertold-Brecht- Platz stands a typical Berlin late 1900 multi story building which houses the famous restaurant “Ganymed” . Above the entrance door with the restaurants name (also a mosaic) you find in an imaginary niche another small beautiful mosaic.

Schiffbauerdamm 5, Berlin, Mitte

The mosaic was installed in 1892/93 to attract visitors to the theater “Berliner Ensemble” . Only in 1997 it was discovered again. The workshop “ wandwerk” restored this mosaic to its full beauty.

Walking on along the Spree Canal my glance gets attracted by a huge mural on the Friedrichsgracht 58. It’s the mural “ Man, measure of all things” by Walter Womacka, who has designed this epic mural in 1968 for the ministry of construction of the former East German Government. It would do a good illustration for Yuval Harari’s book “ Homo Deus”

Then I take a bike to Alexanderplatz and its huge 4lane avenues. At the crossroad of Otto-Braun-Strasse/Karl-Marx-Allee I finally take a close look at the large mosaic mural of Walter Womacka on the former “Haus des Lehrers”. It’s described as one of the largest mosaic murals in Germany and is present in my memory since childhood days.

Now I have to go up the hill to visit a friend in one of the typical Berlin residential areas “Botzow Viertel” On my way my eyes spot these adorable mosaic figures on a playground in Pasteurstrasse (opposite building 24)

contemplating about these mosaics it strikes me that mosaic art is present in our lives since centuries. Only on this walk I came across mosaics from 1890s, 1960 and the present. Not even set out to look for them. They just sprang into my eye on an afternoon walk.

The “Frankfurter Treppe”

Today I visited my mosaic colleague Thomas Denker. I met Thomas at the joint meeting of the German and British Association of mosaic artists in York last October. Thomas is famous for his mosaics designs in which he uses the construction of pixels known in the photographic world.
We are currently working together on a project where he uses his self written software to produce a mosaicified version of a design of me.

Speaking over these and that in the world of mosaics Thomas mentioned the mosaic mural “ Frankfurter Treppe” inspired by Stephan Huber at the Foyer of the Maintower, at the Neue Mainzer Straße in the middle of the City of Frankfurt.

This afternoon I took the tram no 5 to go and visit this mosaic.

Walking along Neue Mainzer Straße connects Opernplatz with Willi – Brandt – Platz. It’s a typical city street which is darkend from the high rises. Already through the glass front the intense blue of the sides of the mural is visible. Going inside the visitor stands immediately in front of the gigantic mosaic.

Frankfurter Treppe Mosaik with reception desk

It depicts persons of importance in the history of the city meeting ordinary citizens on a wide stair symbolizing the public. The known people are not only of constructive importance for the city like the philosopher Theodor Adorno but also of conflicting importance like Magda Spiegel who was killed by the Nationalsozialisten.

The mosaic is made of Smalti- Italian mosaic glass in 20 shades of grey and blue. Thomas told me that they counted 270 hours of work per square meter. The mosaic workshop of Mayer of Munich created the mosaic after a computerized design of e photo montage by Stephan Huber. An amazing work from the year 1999.

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