Aug 26, 2021
Aug 26, 2021

Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church, West Berlin

Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church, West Berlin


René Burri

(Swiss, 1933–2014)

Gelatin silver print

Image: 17.4 x 26.6 cm (6 7/8 x 10 1/2 in.); Paper: 27.9 x 35.3 cm (11 x 13 7/8 in.)

Gift of Joan Liftin 2021.150


Did you know?

René Burri photographed the two Germanys after World War II because it was, he said, the place “where oppositions were exacerbated and beginning to clash.”


One such opposition is revealed in his image of the Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church, built in 1890 and bombed during world War II. The grayed-out, damaged church spire is glimpsed through the overhanging roof of a vast modern building under construction that dominates the foreground. West Germany’s recovery—its return to grandeur—proceeds, undaunted by a symbol of its former defeat.

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Gift of Joan Liftin

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