May 10th, 2013



This is probably a HUGE cheat, but it's all I've got at the moment so I'm going with it!  Also, you will notice by the length of the post that I am
completely obsessed with this subject so feel free to skip the parts that are of no interest to you.

These are photographs of an old sign advertizing the services of a Tailor shop once located here where I live.  The sign was covered over for nearly 100 years and no one knew or remembered that it existed until the building which was covering it up, had to torn down.  As the other building was demolished, the sign gradually became visible after all those years in hiding.  The hotel, partly destroyed by fire, that was being demolished for public safety concerns, had been completed in 1918 and had concealed the sign until Jan. 2011.  As the workman took down the hotel, more and more of the sign came into view.

As to this post and the photos behind the cut having anything to do with the word, preserve, well, this is my take on it.

The old hotel did much to protect and preserve the paint of the Tailor shop sign.  Because the sign was concealed from view, it was also protected from the elements for all those years.  The sign, having been painted on the outside of the building, if left uncovered, would have long since faded away due to sunlight and rain and snow.  The presence of the hotel kept that from happening.

The photos behind the cut are also a form of preservation.  Sadly, due to an accident with the heavy machinery being used to knock down the hotel, the building on which the Tailor shop appeared, also had to torn down.  Photos like the ones that I took, are the only way to preserve the memory of the artist's work.

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Berlin 068

Forgive the lousy photo, but preservation and destruction has been a lot on my mind as I'm just back from a few days in Berlin. The city has suffered a lot of destruction through bombing, but also through ideological decisions about demolishing evidence of previous regimes. So you end up with spaces like this.

What you can see is (left) the Marienkirche, which is a rebuilt but basically preserved 13th-14th century church. It should sit amid a tumble of narrow streets; instead it sits beside a dual carriageway, and on this open square. There are two other items on this square - the fountain, from the rise of Prussia as a great state, but without any context from buildings of the period. The palace which was once near here was levelled in the 1950s. And (right) the lower end of the massive Ferhsehturm, which is a Communist-era TV tower. It's basically redundant now, but it's such a landmark in the east of the city that it is also being preserved, as a signal of the city's past and for its retro chic.

Because the Marienkirche and the Fernsehturm are pretty tall and the fountain isn't, it's hard to get them all in shot together, but I've got slightly better pictures of them below the cut!

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