Thursday, 27 April 2017

der kuss oder glasnost coast to coast

This kiss that has launched a thousand homages occurred during the fraternal encounter between Soviet statesman Leonid Brezhnev and DDR General Secretary of the Socialist Unity Party Erich Honecker in October of 1979—celebrating the thirtieth anniversary of the creation of East Germany with pledges of mutual support.

The graffiti version that features prominently on the Berlin Wall (My God, help me to survive this deadly love), however, came much later. Dmitri Vrubel completed his mural on this date in 1990 and has been conserved as a testament to the times since. The photographer who captured the kiss on film, a French free-lancer named Rรฉgis Bossu, and the artist Vruble met themselves in March of 2009 when the curators of the East Side Gallery invited back all the still living artists to repaint their works in more durable colours and undo thirty years of vandalism and weathering—and the updated attribution credits them both.