On the evening of November 9, 1989 East Germany tried to defuse growing tensions and protesters’ demands for free travel and democratic structures by making travel permits easier to obtain but the announcement brought thousands of East Berliners to the border crossing points in the wall and forcing the surprised guards to open the gates immediately. Although the border guards initially tried to maintain order, it was soon clear that the years of division were at an end.
On November 9 – this historically significant date which this year marks the 28th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, students and faculty celebrated the opening of the art exhibit “Über Mauern hinweg - Beyond Walls” at the ALTEC Media Library. The exhibit displays 22 pieces of art created by students of the GRMN 2020 course and members of the German Club. In their paintings, sculptures, and installations, students critically discuss and creatively depict the situation of the Wende, the process of change from socialist rule to parliamentary democracy that took place in Germany around 1989 and 1990. Their discussions are informed by a fall semester project, organized by Dr. Jany and largely funded by the American Association of Teachers of German (AATG), that allowed them to explore the impact of division on Germany’s national identity in diverse ways, through film, documentary, and an interview session on campus with contemporary witnesses from East and West Germany. Their impressions and thoughts are captured in art productions.
“Über Mauern hinweg-Beyond Walls” exhibit run through November 27 at the ALTEC Media Library, HLMS 159.