Here’s a fun fact for all you Los Angeles residents – did you know that our city is home to the largest stretch of the original Berlin Wall in the world outside of Germany?! I sure didn’t!
Ten segments of the Berlin wall, measuring nearly 40 feet wide, are displayed in a permanent collection outside of the Wende Museum in Los Angeles. The segments were installed as part of The Wall Project, which commemorated the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall in 2009.
The impetus behind The Wall Project was to replicate the Berlin Wall’s function as a site for political and personal expression. As part of the project, the Wende Museum commissioned four artists to paint five of these wall segments, including Thierry Noir, who was one of the first to paint the Berlin Wall in 1984. L.A.-based muralist Kent Twitchell contributed to the project as well, as did other emerging LA artists.
The last four segments of the wall (to the right) contain original graffiti from Cold War era Berlin.
Hello, Mr. Presidents.
The other side of the wall, part of the Wende Museum’s Surveillance Project, brings together street artists to interpret the role of surveillance in our lives from the Cold War until today. These murals cover nine segments belonging to the east side of the original Berlin wall – the side that was never painted and faced the East German death strip.
What a truly fascinating exhibit!