Part of the fun of photographic art is the priviledge of trying that which is new for you, the photographer. And although I don't pretend to be reinventing the wheel, I just wanted to try this.
Cologne, Germany, was said to have had as many churches as there were days in the year - yes, 365! However, sadly, over 80% of the city was destroyed or damaged in the war, and even more sadly, the city planners post-war did a poor job in rebuilding a city that is "vision- friendly". The 1960s and 70s were dreadful on the eyes of the beholder walking through that city especially then. The zoning laws that ever existed gave no respect to being able to appreciate a vantage point for the architectural jewels that have been rebuilt. Having lived in Cologne, and as a trained urban planner, I am low on forgiveness for that.
Yet, the churches that have been rebuilt are a testimony to the resilience of the wonderful people of Cologne and their spirit, to celebrate life no matter what. It is known by many as the most friendly city in the country and I can attest to that. I can also say that there are many other aspects of the city that make it quite special culturally. The Kölner smile and are welcoming despite that dirty edge which I guess is part of what makes the city what it is.
The religious byzantine-styled edifices found there are wonderful, but surrounded closely, in many cases, by simply hideous and drab buildings that keep locals and tourists alike from really being able to gaze upon the full beauty of these structures.
I could not begin to post all of the massive structures in this blog, even though that original large number of churches has been greatly reduced due to lack of funds and space to rebuild them all. But, I dare say all the big ones are back in either full form or at least their towers.
In honor of those holy places and what they experienced as a result of the wrong thinking of those times, I have taken these pictures. This set is meant to not show them in crisp form, rather in mosaic, as they have been rebuilt, piece by piece in hopes of establishing a better society and future for this country.