Rudi Meisel – Landsleute
1977 – 1987 Two Germanys
Conventional coziness, inhospitable housing, neighborly chat, beery gatherings, youthful rebellion, entertaining fests, rundown streets – over a period of eleven years, West German photographer Rudi Meisel captured the everyday life of ordinary people on either side. His photojournalistic documents merge into a unique, historical archive, and confuse and astonish on account of the subjects' similarity. What is, actually, specifically West, specifically East? Often one has to look to the image titles to be reliably sure of classification. Rudi Meisel was one of the few West German photographers to travel to the GDR several times a year. On assignment from numerous media outlets he was able to document everyday life there – a special thing at that time. In the street photography tradition he is interested in events beyond state-controlled propaganda and staging. Perhaps, in interplay and comparison, the images provide insights into the question of dispositions that make up things like "Germanness" or characteristics of the "German people." Rudi Meisel (b. 1949) has worked since 1971 as a freelance photojournalist, among others for Spiegel, ZEIT, Stern, Time, Newsweek, Merian, GEO, ZEITmagazin.
|Contributors||Felix Hoffmann, Hans-Michael Koetzle|