Saturday Photo Friday #5

September 14, 2008

in Architecture, Cheap Activities, Europe, Free Stuff, Germany, Photos, Travel, Web Tips

What a difference 100 years and 500 meters makes!

Within short walking distance of last week’s photo (Dresden’s Procession of Princes), the no-budget traveler will find this socialist mural on the side of Dresden’s Palace of Culture:

There is perhaps no city in the former East Germany that better exemplifies this historical juxtaposition of styles and cultures than Dresden, where the baroque old city with its blackened sandstone is surrounded by the alternately decayed and modernized concrete block houses of the 1960s.

What cities have you visited where you were struck (architecturally or otherwise) by the cruel march of history?

View this week’s other Photo Friday participants here.

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Debbie 09.15.08 at 6:34 am

I’m loving these “murals”

You asked where else we were struck by the cruel march of history? Phnom Pehn. The temples and palace are absolutely beautiful, and then you go visit the modern day markets or, worse, tol sleng (the prison during the Khmer Rouge time) and you wonder how a country could fall so far.

Thanks for joining in Photo Friday again!

2 Jennie 09.15.08 at 8:55 pm

Beijing. So much of the “history” is rebuilt fakes. And you have ugly midcentury buildings (in the classic communist style) next to historic relics next to gleaming skyscrapers… it’s jarring.

3 Nomadic Matt 09.17.08 at 3:31 pm


4 Alex Robertson Textor 09.30.08 at 4:59 pm

I know I’m commenting late on this, but I’d submit Ohrid and Prilep in the Republic of Macedonia as candidates. Both feature beautiful old (even ancient) districts near Yugostyle monstrosities. I genuinely love that anonymous Eastern Bloc style, but of course the forty-year-old buildings are in far worse shape than those many times older.

I’ve heard from a friend of Karelian background that Vyborg’s architectural hodgepodge provides some dramatic juxtapositions along the same theme.

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