Berlin is an incredibly large and ugly city, however I have to admit, it has some really cool art installations all over the city. It is obviously a very progressive city with lots of interesting graffiti and art on its streets. What is street art? Some of you may ask me the question. Street art is a visual art work created on a public place. It is usually unsanctioned. It started in the 1980ies. It can be spray painted graffiti art on walls, sculptures, sticker art, graffiti. Keith Haring and Jean-Michel Basquiat were two of the first prominent street artists of the eighties. In the eighties, many people wondered whether graffiti is art and whether it should be banned. Today, graffiti is accepted and appreciated all over the globe. Some neighbourhoods of big cities like East-London, Brooklyn, Venice Beach serve as an open-air art museum and tourists visit these places to observe graffiti of some of the most famous graffiti artists of the World. You can find lots of beautiful street art around Berlin. You have the option of exploring the city alone to find beautiful street art or you can join an organized street art tour in Berlin, where they will tell you about the history of the graffiti and their artists.
Coolest Street Art Berlin
Art in Berlin is everyhere. One of my favorite is Keith Haring’s installations. The American artist Keith Haring was famous for expressing homosexuality through his work in the 80ies. he created some of the best street art of the 80ies. his work can be found across Europe and in New York. His symbolism to talk about AIDS, that he was suffering from, was apparent in his work.
The Berlin Wall served as an ideal surface for graffiti artists and they used it as a canvas to display their art. The coolest Berlin wall art was a graffiti called “The Kiss” of Brezhnev kissing Honecker on the Berlin Wall. You may think this was a joke, but there was an actual kiss between Russian leader Leonid Brezhnev and East-German President Erich Honecker at the time. The original photo was taken in 1979 in honour of the thirtieth anniversary of the German Democratic Republic. Fraternal kisses among socialist leaders were not unusual at this era, however this picture shows much more affection than just a fraternal kiss.
Many of the Berlin wall graffiti became World famous. Berlin is full of all sorts of cool street art. I loved the Trabant installation on the middle of the road. Trabant was an old East-German car that even my grandfather drove in the Communism. These days it serves as a vintage item that reminds people of the years of Communism on the streets of Berlin. The best thing about Berlin is that you can find street art everywhere. Berlin street art makes the city feel like an open-air museum. It is an absolute must for all the street art lovers.
Best Berlin Art Galleries
If you are one of those people who prefer to visit the Berlin art galleries rather than just strolling around the city looking at street art, you should check out the following urban art galleries in Berlin they portray some of the best contemporary art in Berlin:
The C/O Gallery – An old royal post office from 1881 on Oranienburgerstrasse portraying mostly work by famous photographers like Robert Mappelthorpe, Peter Lindbergh and Annie Leibovitz. Oranienburgerstrasse 35/36, Mitte
Berlinische Galerie – The gallery is in a renovated glass warehouse, so it has plenty of light and funky criss-crossing staircases. This gallery is many artists’ favorite. Its permanent collection portrays art by berlin artists since 1870. It is the most important Modern Art Museum of Berlin. Alte Jakobstrasse 124-128, Kreuzberg
Hamburger Bahnhof – Museum für Gegenwart – The name of this museum means Hamburg Railway Station, The Museum of the Future. The railway station where the gallery is housed was built in 1847. It is located in the Mitte and it displays cool pieces by Warhol and Lichtenstein. This is my favorite art gallery in Berlin. Invalidenstrasse 50-51, Mitte
Pool Gallery – Another cool gallery in the Mitte portraying young contemporary art and funky photography. The best part about it is that admission is free. Tucholskystrasse 38, Mitte
Sammlung Boros Collection – This modern art collection is housed in a second world war bunker. It was built in 1942 and it served as a bomb shelter, a prison, then a storage for bananas then a club for S&N fetish parties. Christian Boros bought the place to house his art collection here, which consists on pieces from all over the World. You can only view it on the weekends, by appointment. Reinhardtstrasse 20, Mitte
Best Berlin Art Museums
You can find more Berlin art museums on the Museum island. These are some of the more interesting ones:
The Pergamon Museum – It is the most famous museum of Berlin, located on the Museum island. You can find a many collections inside the museum, such as the Antiquities Collection, the Middle East Museum and the Museum of Islamic Art. The Pergamon Altar is a must see, as it is considered one of the wonders of the ancient World. Address: Bodestraße 1-3
The Dahlem Museum Complex – It is the home of non-European artifacts and treasures and the world’s largest collection of crafts. Inside, you can find the Museum of Ethnography, the Asian Art Museum and the Museum of European Cultures Address: Lansstraße 8
The Neues Museum – Here you can find the Egyptian Museum of Berlin. The museum is located on the Museum island. It is home of an impressive papyrus collection. The museum is home of the limestone head of Queen Nefertiti. Within the Neues Museum, you can also see the Museum of Pre- and Early History and the Collection of Classical Antiquities. Address: Bodestraße 1-3
The German Museum of Technology – The museum portrays the Industrial Revolution. It has a fascinating aviation display and also a road transport exhibit. This museum is ideal for those interested in trains, automobiles and planes. Address: Trebbiner Straße 9
The Museum of Applied Arts – The museum was founded in 1867 and it is one of the city’s most important museums. Visitors can see applied art from all over Europe from the Middle Ages up until today. It is home of a 15th-century Lüneberg municipal silver collection and many more interesting ceramics, porcelain, glass, bronze and gold work from the Byzanthine times. Address: Tiergartenstrasse 6
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