Die Moderne Stadt



14 May 15


Peter Weiss, Bag de ens Facader, 1961, Filmstill
Peter Weiss, Bag de ens Facader, 1961, Filmstill


The housing shortage in large cities, controversial construction projects and gentrification processes all illustrate that urban development is still one of the big questions of our future. The recently published DVD edition Die Moderne Stadt (the modern city) offers some answers with film essays from the 1950s/60s, by Herbert Veseley, Manfred Durniok and Dieter Lemmel, among others, as well as the not widely known Bag de ens Facader (behind the same facades), a documentary by Peter Weiss, filmed in Kopenhagen during the 1960s.

Following the ideals of Neues Bauen (modernism) from the 1920s, the modernization of European cities after 1945 aimed at better living conditions for its population. There was a universal shortage of living space, and industrial mass production and consumer culture strongly influenced the population and their social relationships. In this context film as a medium served as a means to promote the city and traffic models of tomorrow on the one hand, and to express a critical point of view on the rationalization of everyday life on the other. This selection of documentary and experimental short movies opens up a unique historical view on the critical discussion of the modern urban development that arose during the 1950s/60s.

After the screening, the publishers of the film edition Ralpf Eue and Florian Wüst will hold a discussion with Joachim Krausse, who is an expert on the topic of modern urban development as well as on film. Together with Joachim Schlandt and Jonas Geist, Joachim Krausse has produced a series of films on public housing for workers and the architectural field research on kitchen, living room etc. in the 1970s for the well-known German television channel (WDR).

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