Schwarz & Weiß

I spent my last memories of 2015 back in the country I spent majority of my childhood in. Going back to Germany always brings back both a euphoric & melancholy feeling. Seeing my family and coming to together as one large family always brings a sense of content and joy, and this year we had a +1. We also took a trip back to a lot of our old homes and schools and hurt to see it being abandon and tore down. Aylin, my sister, is making a beautiful composition of that very topic in which i'll provide a link for (I had the honor to take the photos for the journal). 

This is a trip that never gets old for me the older I get. The pictures I took meant more than just walking in a foreign country and taking pictures. I'm taking pictures of my past time, the places I grew up and learned what life is all about.

Germany, I thank you.

The Death Strip

The strip that split families.

The strip that divided a country and deciding its fate.

The strip that caused turmoil and political tension.

The strip that people have died on trying to cross.

The strip that was eventually destroyed...but never forgotten

For 28 years, the Berlin Wall, also known as the "Death Strip", was built separating the city and the effects of it can still be seen until this very day. West & East Germany can simply be compared to the phrase "Life & Death" for its literal and conceptual sense. Even until this day, East Germany has many of its traits still left behind and the feeling can still be felt in the infrastructure, buildings, roads, everything you can name. After WWII, West Germany was occupied by the Americans and the East side occupied by the Soviet Union. When the wall went up in 1961, one could simply not go from East to West Germany trying to return home. You would be gunned down even stepping near the initial gates of the Wall, coining the name the "Death Strip." Walking from West to East, no problem. Walking from East to West, you were trapped in a dead-end. It was the epitome of "one way in, no way out"

The feeling of being out near the wall brought a feeling I've never felt before. Not only did it bring out 28 years of suppression on the other side, but the history of why the Wall was built lives through the cement that kept it up. All the way back to 1939 is the reason why the crumbing of an infamous wall came down in 1989. Touching the remains of the wall and the replacements feels as if I'm touching over 80 years of mix emotion; pain, torture, relief and anger.

The feel of everything about why this wall was up can make you rethink the concept of "the grass is greener on the other side" because it just might be that for cases like this.

Berlin, I thank you.