Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

BUSINESS DAILY

France's Iliad considers fresh offer for T-Mobile

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Is Carla Bruni against a political comeback for Sarkozy?

Read more

DEBATE

Clone of Pakistan Protests: Democracy put the test (Part Two)

Read more

DEBATE

Pakistan Protests: Democracy put the test (Part One)

Read more

ENCORE!

The French Maestro of Soul

Read more

FOCUS

US tobacco giants want lion's share of e-cigarette business

Read more

ENCORE!

Bold and bonkers: Kate Bush is back on stage

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Simon Serfaty, US foreign policy specialist

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

'It's a War, Stupid!'

Read more

  • NATO plans new 'spearhead' force to counter Russia

    Read more

  • French education ministry picture sparks racist abuse

    Read more

  • UN backs Iraqi request for inquiry into IS militant crimes

    Read more

  • US military targets Somalia's al Shabaab Islamist group

    Read more

  • Monaco’s Falcao leaves Ligue 1 for Man Utd

    Read more

  • Obama calls for higher wages amid 'revving' US economy

    Read more

  • Video: Ukraine’s children return to school as fighting rages on

    Read more

  • Americans detained in North Korea call for US help

    Read more

  • US urges Israel to reverse West Bank land seizure

    Read more

  • Lesotho PM calls for regional peacekeeping force after ‘coup’

    Read more

  • Ukrainian forces retreat from Luhansk airport after clashes

    Read more

  • Teddy Riner, France’s unstoppable judo champion

    Read more

  • Death toll rises in Paris apartment building blast

    Read more

  • Iraqi forces free Amerli in biggest victory over IS militants since June

    Read more

  • French police arrest hungry hedgehog hunters

    Read more

  • Tripoli under control of militias, says government

    Read more

Berlin Wall restored for anniversary

Latest update : 2008-10-16

The famous East Side Gallery of the Berlin Wall - the biggest open-air art gallery in the world - will be renewed at a cost of 2.2 million euros, in order to have the historic landmark fit for the 20th anniversary of the Wall's fall in 2010.

Murals on the largest remaining section of the Berlin Wall, the world's longest open-air art gallery, are to undergo emergency restoration to save them from decay, an organiser said on Thursday.

 

Most of the 160 km (100 mile)-long wall was torn down after crowds scaled or smashed through it in November 1989 and the East German communist state collapsed.

 
But 118 artists from 22 countries flocked to Berlin in 1990 to paint murals on a surviving 1,300-metre (4,300ft) stretch of the once-forbidding concrete barrier.

 

Since then, paint has faded, the concrete has been eroded by the elements and some panels have been defaced by graffiti.

 

"If we don't restore it now it'll be too late," said Kani Alavi of the East Side Gallery Artists' Association which has organised the 2.2 million-euro ($3-million) restoration.

 

"We want to remove and repaint each image," he said. "We have gone to a lot of effort to track down the artists."

 

Organisers have found about 80 percent of the 118 and are trying to reach the rest.

 

Built by communist authorities who described it as an "anti-fascist protective barrier", the Berlin Wall divided the city for 28 years. Scores of people were killed by East German sentries as they tried to escape across it from east to west.

 

Many of the East Side Gallery's 106 murals were inspired by the collapse of communism. One of the most famous is the "Brotherly Kiss", showing former East German leader Erich Honecker kissing Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev.

 

The gallery was declared a historic monument by the Berlin city government in 1992 and has become one of the city's top tourist attractions.

 

Construction workers and artists began restoration work on Wednesday and aim to complete it by November 9, 2009 -- the 20th anniversary of the Wall being breached.

Date created : 2008-10-16

COMMENT(S)