Fotoeins Fotografie

questions of place & home

Posts tagged ‘Weimar’

Petrikirche, Taufkirche, Eisleben, Saxony-Anhalt, Sachsen-Anhalt, Germany, fotoeins.com

Tracing Martin Luther’s steps in 16 German cities

Above/featured: “Luther war hier. // Luther was here.” Eisleben, Germany – 27 Oct 2016.

In pre-teen years, I attended a Catholic elementary school by weekday, and a missions-oriented Protestant church by weekend. I already had multiple questions running around my pre-scientist brain, like electrons appearing and dissipating in a fuzzy halo. When various disparate elements began to settle with few satisfying answers, I left behind the churches and their respective religions. But one thing that’s remained is my love of history. History has never been boring, because I carry the past (as offspring of immigrants), and I’m determined to bring history’s lessons into the present.

Even in youth, I had to ask: why was one set of churches called “Protestant”? What was under protest? How did one man help spark a movement that would help merge and create a version of a language that continues today, that would bring accessible means to literacy for the public, and that would begin to change rule by religion to rule by law?

Martin Luther (‘Luder’, at birth)

From his birth in Eisleben; to formative years in Mansfeld, Magdeburg, and Erfurt; to the bulk of his working and teaching years in Wittenberg; to his death in Eisleben, Martin Luther set upon a course that helped change language, education, culture, religion, and governance. In many ways, Luther had much to thank Jan Hus for the latter’s efforts to reform the Catholic Church in Bohemia one hundred years earlier.

Every year on the 31st of October, a number of cities, regions, and federal states in Germany mark an important event in this movement. It’s widely understood Martin Luther walked up to the Castle Church in Wittenberg and pinned his 95 Theses to the church doors on 31 October 1517. Even if direct evidence Luther actually posted papers to the doors is debatable, what’s not is that 2017 marks the 500th anniversary of the Reformation in Germany.

Martin Luther, Reformation, German Reformation, Wittenberg, Marktplatz, Saxony-Anhalt, Sachsen-Anhalt, Germany, Deutschland, fotoeins.com

The illuminated Luther memorial stands tall in front of Wittenberg’s town hall at Market Square. As UNESCO World Heritage Site, the town hosts 4 sites: Luther House, Melanchthon House, St. Mary’s Town Church, and the Castle Church. 2017 is the 500th anniversary of Luther’s Reformation in Germany. Various German federal states, regions, and cities will mark the quincentenary throughout the year. Photo at Wittenberg Marktplatz on 30 Oct 2016.


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Dönerteller, City Kebap, Theaterplatz, Weimar, Germany, fotoeins.com

Fotoeins (Food) Friday: Dönerteller (Döner plate)

It doesn’t matter where I am: the craving for Döner never ceases, even if I’m on the other side of the big eastern pond. I’ve got thinly shaved slices of Döner meat drizzled with garlic- and chili-sauce, served with fries, mixed salad, and Sauerkraut, accompanied by a cool yogurt Ayran, and finished with a “türkisches Tee” (Turkish tea, not shown). I devoured this beautiful meal at City Kebap at the southwestern corner of Theaterplatz (on Dingelstedt Strasse) in Weimar.

Thanks to Weimar Tourism, Thüringen Tourismus, Germany National Tourism Board for access to places and activities in the city; and to Dorint Hotel am Goethepark for a comfortable and welcoming stay. I made the photo above on 30 April 2015 with the Canon EOS6D, EF 24-105 f/4L zoom-lens, and the following settings: 1/125s, f/4.5, ISO4000, 28mm focal-length. This post appears on Fotoeins Fotopress at fotoeins.com as http://wp.me/p1BIdT-7nU.

Weimar UNESCO WHS: City Church at Herderplatz

Weimar is a compact town with a large number of buildings as a part of two UNESCO World Heritage Sites. As part of the “Classic Weimar” World Heritage listing, Herderplatz (Herder Plaza) in the northern part of the city’s old town is known most for the church with two spires and a dark grey roof. This is the Stadtkirche (City Church), known also the Church of Saint Peter and Paul.

The church dates to the middle of the 13th-century AD (CE) when town and charter were first established, although a settlement in the area goes further back to the beginning of the 10th-century AD. Built initially as late-Gothic and redesigned as Baroque, and what fires and war bombing couldn’t destroy, several phases of rebuilding and renovations were completed in 1953, 1977, and 2000.

Johannes Gottfried Herder (1744-1803) was German philosopher, writer, and theologian. From 1776 until his death, he lived and worked in Weimar as General Superintendent for the Saxon-Weimar Duchy, Court Chaplain, member of the church advisory council, and President of the Supreme Consistory. For his service to the city’s people and contributions to German philosophy and literature, and as the site of his burial, the church is also known as Herderkirche (Herder Church).

Cranach Altar

The Cranach Altar is an important testament to the history of the Reformation in the state of Thuringia. The triptych was started by Lucas Cranach the Elder in 1552, and continued by his son, Lucas Cranach the Younger, in 1554. Completed in 1555, the entire piece was installed over the main church altar by 1557. The paintings include portraits of Lucas Cranach the Elder and Martin Luther, and centre around “Christus am Kreuz” (Christ’s crucifixion). Christ’s blood streams out and touches Cranach the Elder’s forehead, symbolizing a direct relationship between God and people without the need for or the intercession of priests; more here.

Contemporaries

Lucas Cranach the Elder, 1472-1553.
Martin Luther, 1483-1546.
Lucas Cranach the Younger, 1515-1586.

Johannes Gottfried Herder, 1744-1803.
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, 1749-1832.
Friedrich Schiller, 1759-1805.

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Uni-Hauptgebäude, Bauhaus Universität, Weimar, Thüringen, Germany, UNESCO World Heritage, Weltkulturerbe, fotoeins.com

Weimar UNESCO WHS: Bauhaus Old and New

There’s a clear transition in time where architecture and design took a step from behind closed doors for the sole purview of the rich and royal and out into the open for public and general consumption. It’s no surprise the years from the end of the 19th-century into the 20th-century marked big changes, with Art Nouveau at the time as part of the Secession movement. Throughout Europe, rebellion and revolution were in the air, economically, politically, and culturally.

The Bauhaus movement also helped initiate a conversation, creating and fostering a relationship between industry’s machinery and artistic or cultural creativity. Bauhaus opened in Weimar in 1919, before moving to Dessau and Berlin. The rise of the National Socialists deemed Bauhaus “degenerate” and did all they could to eliminate a movement and her people deemed counter to National Socialist policy. With Bauhaus’ forced closure in 1933 by the Nazis, a number of practitioners escaped Germany to other parts of the world, including the United States and Argentina.

For their deep and wide-ranging influence on 20th-century art, architecture, and design, an incomplete list of names includes Martin Gropius, Lyonel Feininger, Gerhard Marcks, Paul Klee, Wassily Kandinsky, Oskar Schlemmer, Herbert Bayer, Irene Bayer (née Hecht), Karla Grosch, Hannes Meyer, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, etc. In particular, László Moholy-Nagy would move to Chicago in the United States and established in 1937 the New Bauhaus which became the Institute of Design in 1944.

Tucked away on a university campus a few minutes south of the Weimar city centre, two important building lie across from each other: the Saxony Academy of Art1 building and the Grand Ducal Saxony School of Arts and Crafts (College of Applied Arts)2. The former is now the main building for the present-day Bauhaus University, and the latter now houses Bauhaus University’s Faculty of Design. In 1996, these two buildings formed a part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site (WHS) listing and designation for Bauhaus sites in Weimar and Dessau.


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GTM15, Weimarer Markt, Markt, Weimar, Thüringen, Germany, fotoeins.com

Weimar: an instant walk through the UNESCO town (IG)

Like Erfurt, Weimar is located near the geographic centre of Germany. It’s a small town with over 60000 people, but what it lacks in size is surely made up in history and the number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites. The city hosts multiple sites in two separate categories:

•   “Classical Weimar”, including the Anna Amalia Library and the Rococo Hall, and
•   “Bauhaus Sites”, including the Bauhaus University.

Erfurt, Weimar, and the state of Thuringia were hosts for Germany Travel Mart 2015 (GTM15), the annual meeting and workshop by the Germany National Tourism Board. Visiting the “heart of Germany” fulfilled my desire to spend time in the former East Germany. Many overlook Thuringia and the middle of Germany on their way elsewhere, but the following shots provide reasons why you should consider stop and embrace one of the “centres of classic and modern Germany.”

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