Haus der Geschichte Bonn 2010 – Gilles Peress Exhibition – The Fall

You know these „bigger-than-life-moments“? Sometimes they just happen, and sometimes change is in the air all around before something groundbreaking goes down – as was the case in November 1989. French photographer Gilles Peress had been roaming the streets of Berlin for days, shooting around 100 rolls of film, while he was waiting for „something“ to happen. When the Wall went down on November 9th 1989 the now famous photo reporter had already been taking pictures for five days straight. In 2004 he displayed his collection in an exhibition and asked visitors to scribble notes and thoughts below the images, thus expanding his documentary, adding a new angle. Just like the pictures he had originally taken, the expanded photographs started to gain new momentum – presenting a vast collection of memories, a mix of ambiguous thoughts and ideas. In 2004 one visitor wrote on a picture: „The Wall inside many people’s minds has not really become any smaller.“ How true, even today. In 2010 The German House of History (Haus der Geschichte) displayed Peress’s exhibition for a second time – in its transformed state. An exhibition of the exhibition so to speak. I had the privilege to be among invited journalists for its grand opening. HDG had asked us to document the exhibition and I decided to go for another photographical transformation, using the style of the original pairs to create a feeling of repetition, – making yet another document.


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Ausstellungsbericht – Text © G. Keller
Gilles Peress The Fall