Lisa Großkopf

During the three weeks I spent in Lichtenberg, I went in search of paradise. In today’s colloquial language, the term “paradise” describes situations characterised by abundance, effortlessness, the magic of the unknown, the disreputable or the sensational. The current consumer society brings paradise concepts, which were culturally linked to the imagination of perfect, but for structural reasons unattainable places, into supposedly tangible proximity.

I started my exploration at the Dong Xuan Centre – the place that recently attracted media attention for its lack of fire protection and suspected human trafficking. Deep inside the centre, I discovered the Paradise Market, where I bought a magnet in the shape of a grape for a paltry one euro fifty. Only a stone’s throw away, I found the next paradisiacal retreat: the pool paradise. Billiards – not swimming pools, it should be noted at this point. In this somewhat outdated café, I treated myself to a cocktail that tasted like diabetes, which I chose primarily because of its name: Paradiso. (passion fruit & strawberry syrup, cream, pineapple juice). After bravely fighting my way through the calorie bomb, I hopped on my bike and jetted back to the already familiar Victoria town. Once there, I had my eyelashes dyed at the cosmetics paradise – a thoroughly painful affair. But if you want to be beautiful, you have to be able to suffer, as the saying goes. In this sense: close your eyes and get through it! The end of my journey was marked by the small, but all the finer allotment garden site Paradies. Far away from any kind of consumption, I seemed to have found a piece of land between Schlichtallee and Fischerstraße that comes close to the traditional idea of paradise.

October, 2021