What I like most about Berlin is its variety of people, food, and architectural styles from different eras coexisting side by side on the same streets. I constantly have to stop to admire the lovingly restored turn of the century Altbau apartment buildings with their Jugendstil decorative motifs and elegant foyers leading into the hidden world of inner courtyards. (see my door series in my Instagram feed).

But I also find myself drawn to the no-nonsense prefabricated concrete Plattenbau used extensively in economically stringent East Berlin. With their tendency for monotonous repetition and a predilection for a drab palette, they spoke unequivocally of collective parsimony.

This painting is hopefully the first of a series of “portraits” of remaining Plattenbau. I challenge myself (and the viewer) to make the drab, the monotonous, interesting.