East End gallery artwork

East Side Gallery

The East Side Gallery is a 1.3 kilometre section of the Berlin Wall that is still intact in the center of Berlin.  It is located on Muhlenstrasse between the Oberbaum Bridge and the Ostbahnhof.  It is the longest intact section of the Berlin Wall still in existence.  On one side of the wall is the River Spree across which is the Kreuzberg neighbourhood.

There are approximately 106 pieces of artwork created in 1990 from artists all over the world commemorating freedom. Unfortunately, many of the pieces are covered in graffiti even though it is illegal to do so.   It is the largest open air gallery in the world.

East End Gallery

In 2006 a section of the wall was removed so that there was an unobstructed access from the 02 centre to the River Spree.  I was told this removal was protested by Berliners but to no avail.  What the company wanted, the company got.  In 2013, without notice to residents, another section of the wall was removed to create a luxury housing development.  Protestors, however, mobilised fast and managed to stop the full planned demolition.

The Berlin Wall is a symbol of the cold war and a part of world history.  Between the pollution and the graffiti, the East End Gallery seems a little dilapidated.  It is definitely worth seeing while the going is good especially with the threat of encroaching development hanging around.

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I am an American expat based in London with my travel-loving family. I write at Just Go Places Blog about luxury, cultural and family travel.

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