Setting free Gilles Fromonteil

After a lot of consideration, I decided to build my piece beside the revolution monument in the ‘Zentralfriedhof’ cemetery in Friedrichsfelde. This memorial marks a line that goes right through both Berlin and the entire 20th century. It was built in 1926 in memory of the workers who were killed in the January 1919 uprising and was based on a design by Mies van der Rohe (director of the Bauhaus in Dessau from 1930 to 1933). It was a courageous decision to opt for such a modern memorial at the time. I find this an interesting debate. The memorial was dismantled down to its foundations by the Nazis in early 1935. However, it was not reconstructed after the end of the Second World War. Instead of rebuilding the memorial, Berlin’s city administration decided to commission a new joint memorial site for social democrats and communists. I very much wanted my work to relate to these events, as this revolution was an entirely correct one.

January, 2013