A proposal to reorganize the Berlin Wall Memorial site.

Fourth year travel abroad studio, University of Cincinnati. Instructor: Henry Hildebrandt.

Bernauer Strasse

Bernauer Strasse

"Neighbors, friends, and relatives were separated from one another. The house across the street was suddenly part of another political system."

1961 - 1989

The Death Strip divided a city into East and West.

Present Day

The current Berlin Wall Memorial site is littered with artifacts as a factual preservation of history but does little to evoke an emotional response. An insertion, a circle, bounded between two walls, attempts to capture the tension the wall created.

The effect of registering the presence of others without direct contact is achieved by using a one-way mirror.

Walkthrough Animation

Seeing and Been Seen

Is There Anyone There?

After the wall was erected, its presence disappeared into the Everyday of the life going on around it. This feeling of “sameness” lasted until demolition in 1989 and only then was the impact the wall had on life in its city fully realized. In a sequence marked by a beginning, middle, and end, the magnitude of this psychological scar is realized without knowing it.


Cross Section

Tectonic Model

Site Diagrams

Designer’s note: In the early stages of the project, I considered an alternate proposal for an insertion in the second court of the Louvre in Paris, the Cour Carrée. Though the site was less emotionally loaded than Berlin, the idea considers the potential tension between an extruded cylinder and the square pyramid in the Cour Napoléon and seeks to activate the neglected second court.

Process Sketches

Katja Heinemann

Katja Heinemann

© Jonathan Wilkinson