Berlin apartments: living with ghosts from the past | Life and style

femaleGisbert Pöppler brought people for dinner, but Berlin's past ghosts are honored guests. There are three velvet armchairs around the dining table in his apartment in the central Mitte district of Berlin. The interior architect was rescued over time with the nutritious flooring of the floor of the Soviet apparatus obtained from the "Honecker Lounge" of the East German State Council building. The table itself was previously a conference table at the Berlin Evangelical Academy, and if you look at the top of the table, you can see that the short legs are erected in old-fashioned metal money boxes like concept art. Pöppler walked the apartment on a sunny autumn morning and said, “I was wondering why this table is so low. “One theory is that the Protestant church did not want people in important gatherings to hide behind furniture. Isn't it a wonderful idea? ”

Pöppler usually designs and builds living spaces for others, and Pöppler lives in apartments, which also speak of love for ideas hidden behind everyday objects and also serve as a fuzzy historical museum in the German capital.


Kitchen. Photo: Wolfgang Stahr / The Guardian

Originally outside Bremen in northern Germany, Pöppler arrived in Berlin, where the city was divided in the fall of 1989. In the western class at the time, it was difficult to find a living space, and a young architecture student wandered the streets for several weeks, ringing the doorbell to see if tenants could explore and admire the building. "As a student, I felt like I had a point of knowing every house in Berlin."

Two months after the arrival of the Berlin Wall, a new territory was opened to capture the hearts of architectural magpies. In 1995, Pöppler found this 150 square meter apartment in an apartment building in the 1890s, not far from the Checkpoint Charlie border crossing. Some are secluded, buildings are demolished Platen bau As on the opposite side of the road (concrete prefabricated). There was no central heating, and only coal-fired ovens had to constantly pay attention: “slightly like caring for a dog.” But Pöppler and his partner plummeted.

Average interior of Berlin Alt Bau (Period) The apartment has been demolished. For many years, the usual fashion was to leave the walls white and apply plaster to the battered herringbone parquet floor or ceiling as the only ornament. “For a few years, even couches were considered bourgeois,” says Pöppler.

Hall with pink tailor's table.

Hall with pink tailor's table. Photo: Wolfgang Stahr / The Guardian

Entering his two-story apartment is a completely different experience. The walls of the entrance hall are washed with warm Wedwoodwood blue. The dusty pink table Pöppler, taken from a tailor in West Berlin, welcomes visitors. On the left living room is the Chinese export carpet of the 1920s and the Musée d & # 39; Here is a collection of abstract paintings by East German painter Hans Brosch on a research trip to Orsay. In 1979 escaped west.

Growing up at home in "beige and black shades," Pöppler argued that there is no fundamental theory behind his choice, but he used the color of his choice. He does not like the trend of Farrow & Ball style British paint. This is because there is a tendency to “fog is misty” to favor French manufacturers who say paint is more prominent.

One of the hallmarks of 19th-century apartment buildings in the city is the so-called Berliner Zimmer in Berlin, where the street-facing part of the apartment is described by Friedrich Engels as "the dark haven, the old air and the Berlin philosophicalism".

But in Pöppler's apartment, the Prussian spider web flew almost to the Baroque style for playful design ideas. In Berlin Zimmer, a flat kitchen, he was a vintage cabinet that had been scratched since he was 14 years old, and his long-term American colleague, Remo Lotano, next to artwork made of a salad fork with deer and horn handle Was.

Dining room with chairs.

Dining room with chairs. Photo: Wolfgang Stahr / The Guardian

In the adjacent bedroom, the central ceiling lamp is replaced by four colored lights in each corner of the room. The filled Jay descends from the perch above the doorway.

Berlin's past story reveals itself only when entering the second or third room: the courtyard terrace that Pöppler found on Prenzlauer Berg street has a garden table, bent in shape and wormholes depending on the weather. . Sputnik ceiling lights from the lobby of the East Berlin Sports Hall. Or there is a shelf from a bookstore where he was subsidized by the East German regime and closed as the wall collapsed, which was made to contain only a thin paper cover of Marxist theory.

In recent years, however, Pöppler and Lotano have spent less time roaming and stopping selling junk stores and more time designing and manufacturing their own furniture. The pride in front of the window overlooking the street in the brightest part of the apartment is made of elegant chairs with curling steel feet and porcelain cupboards. Storage, good from China.

“I don't want to say that vintage is over. "But there are also vintage types that blind you to the idea behind the furniture." The ghost of the past is still there.



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