BEFORE YOU ARE GONE
Lots of places and buildings I grew up with are disappearing.
Usually they have to demolish constructions because of the
asbestos they used.
Asbestos is an extremely heat-resistant material which has
been proven to cause cancer. My primary school does not exist
anymore and my favorite building in Berlin, the International
Congress Center (ICC), has to deal with the same problem.
Like myself, the architects of the ICC, Ralf Schüler and his wife
Ursulina Schüler-Witte were both born in Berlin. The ICC was
the biggest project of their career, which also included the
U-Bahnhof Blissestrasse, the infamous Bierpinsel and
The ICC took 8 years to be completed, in the time from 1971
to 1979. Despite its one-of-a kind design the Schülers never
really reached international success. As their last building created,
the ICC holds all the aesthetic ideas and energy from their
This big spaceship fascinates me and every time I enter the grounds
I discover something new. The mixture of materials and angles hold
some of my childhood memories, as a part of the Berlin I used to
know. Built directly next to the Autobahn it was also the first thing
I saw as a kid on our return to Berlin after holidays.
Every time I see this massive structure I feel at home, simultaneously
happy and sad. I know just one other building that invokes similar
emotions in me: the Flughafen Tegel.
Kaufhaus Jansdorf, Berlin Mitte,
Including the videoinstallation ´vorwärts`
and original furniture elements from the ICC.
TXL Airport Berlin before closing
AVUS Car Race Track close to the Highway