Given that we have enough life years behind us to vaguely appreciate an existence beyond our childhood cocoon there are moments in world history so profound that our whereabouts on the planet is indelibly etched onto our cerebral cortex as is the event itself. The assassination of Kennedy, the Twin Towers, the first small step on the moon, the fall of the Berlin wall are all up there in our psychological GPS.

In that latter case, November 9th 1989 a friend and I fortuitously arrived at Checkpoint Charlie the famous crossing point between East and West Berlin an hour after the announcement of free passage between the two halves of this divided city. We had arrived at Tegel airport two hours earlier for what can loosely be described as a week of photographic snouting around, Glasnost was in the air and the political upheaval in the Eastern bloc had begun it’s inexorable landslide but neither of us had any idea of quite how serendipitous our journey was to be.

After a long, euphoric, adrenalin filled night and this being pre internet era the films were flown back to London for media use. The photographs in this exhibition are not only of that famous event but from other countries in Eastern Europe I visited that year who were also undergoing radical transformation.

By no means are they a comprehensive view but hopefully they give an essence of the times. I am not a journalist, these are simply passing moments in the lives of ordinary people taken by an interested tourist.

George Coles October 2014

Exhibition runs:

27th Oct – 2nd Nov 2014.

Jubilee Library

Jubilee Street,
East Sussex

01273 290800

1989 and all that

Wall Flyer