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We went twice to Berlin in 2010. This is the first Shooting Days in Berlin.

We went for a second time to Berlin in 2010. Our aim was to go back to the former sanatorium Beelitz-Heilstätten, since we hadn't had enough time for a complete photoshoot.

We went there with the best models of Mister Belgium Personality, one of the beauty pageant of our country (most belgian people look quite awfull, but we have the most beauty pageants of the world).

Everything seemed quite interesting on the first visit, and for a good reason; it was my first visit to the city. On the second visit, the city looked just like a normal western town with too much high rise buildings and lot of billboards. What made the city so unique, the division between East and West had completely dissapeared, eaten up by the capitalist west. It looked like the Germans were eager to forget their past. The same happened in Belgium, when they destroyed the bunkers of the second world war in the seventies. Now all the remaining bunkers are protected by law as historic monument (but nearly too late, as the most interesting bunkers are destroyed). There are some informative pannels in the historic centre of the town, but they are lost between the commercial billboards. Nothing is left from the division of the city, and you can't pinpoint where the Wall was located.

All the old buildings are locked up
and the police arrived buring out photoshoot.


Of course, we went back to Beelitz-Heilstätten, but the complete site was locked (only the part that was not used as a clinic, of course). We couldn't go inside and the police arrived during our photoshoot.

Berlin, like New York and most capitalist cities doesn't sleep at night. The show must go on and the euros (or dollars) must be spent to keep the economy going. Not being able to shoot at Beelitz-Heilstätten, we went to the railroad station of Pankow. It is a former repair centre, but when we arrived most of the site was in complete desolation. When a plant or industrial site closes, there is a time limit when it's ideal to visit the site: after some years, there's nothing left from the former glory of the site; everything is removed or broken, covered with tags or overgrown and has become virtually impenetrable (the “Rundhaus”). Nothing was left that remembered the visitors of the history of the place. Visiting the place, nobody would have known that train were restored here: there are no rails anymore!

To avoid being locked up in the traffic jams, we did some sightseeing on sunday morning and leaved the city in the late afternoon, but halas! the traffic congestion lasted till we were back in Belgium. Again, it took us 15 hours to drive back.

Another shooting in a sanatorium: Joseph Lemaire (Tombeek).

Berlin II 2010

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