What’s on in Germany: August 18 – 24

This Week's Highlights: A virtual wall in Berlin, Italian art in Cologne, and Frankfurt celebrates African culture.

What's on in Germany: August 18 - 24
Domenico Campagnola's The Holy Hieronymus - at Cologne's Wallraf-Richartz Museum



Virtual Wall/Reconstructing the Wall

Fifty years ago, a 3.6 metre high wall went up around West Berlin. Get a feel for what it was like to reside in a divided city this week at Kunstquartier Bethanien. An interactive 3D installation lets you stroll along the wall, look out over “no man’s land,” and witness historic events that took place there.

Price: Free

Location: Kunstquartier Bethanien, Mariannenplatz 2

Times: Wednesday – Sunday, 3-7pm; through August 28

Phone: 030 612 88 789

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Audi Open Air Classical

Music from Casablanca and Breakfast at Tiffany’s fills the air Thursday, while Friday night features a ukulele orchestra from the UK. This weekend’s series of open-air concerts at Berlin’s historic Culture Brewery includes a diverse array of musical offerings. Get in a Spanish state of mind Saturday, and enjoy a little opera on Sunday.

Price: €25 – 40

Location: Kulturbrauerei, Schönhauser Allee 36

Times: Thursday, August 18 – Sunday, August 21, 7:30pm

Reservations: 030 4431 51 51

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Festival Über Lebenskunst – Perspectives of a Sustainable Way of Living

The “art of living” takes on new dimensions as the human race grapples with climate change. Artists, scientists, and activists present new ideas on sustainable living this weekend at the House of World Cultures. Explore Fat Koehl Architects’ “city of the future,” rock out to the music of Bonaparte, and take a rainwater shower.

Price: €30 (Conference Pass); €10 (Day Pass); €5 (Single Ticket)

Location: Haus der Kulturen der Welt, John-Foster-Dulles-Allee 10

Times: Wednesday, August 17 – Sunday, August 21

Phone: 030 397 870

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An Un/Certain Eye – Vasari 500. Italian Drawings by Leonardo, Raphael & Co

Giorgio Vasari painted frescos for the Medicis, designed Florentine loggias, renovated mediaeval churches, and wrote biographies about the artists of his time. In honour of the 500th anniversary of the Renaissance painter, architect, and art historian’s birth, the Wallraf-Richartz-Museum in Cologne is exhibiting a rare trove of Italian drawings. See works by Leonardo, Raphael, and Vasari himself.

Price: €8.50

Location: Wallraf-Richartz-Museum, Obenmarspforten (at the Cologne City Hall)

Times: Tuesday – Sunday, 10am-6pm; Thursday, 10am-9pm; August 19 – November 20

Phone: 0221 221 21119

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Cologne Used Bicycle Market

The best way to get around town is on two wheels. Take a stroll over to Friesenplatz Saturday and take your pick of dozens of second-hand bicycles. Then belt out the Queen song as you pedal around the city. “I want to ride my bicycle!”

Price: €5

Location: Friesenplatz

Times: Saturday, August 20, 8am-4pm

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Dresden City Festival

There’s a festive atmosphere in Dresden this weekend. From an international culture market on Hauptstrasse to a mediaeval market on Königsufer, the Dresden City Festival offers an extensive range of amusements around town. Take in the splendour of a dazzling city, and celebrate summer.

Price: Free

Location: Various

Times: Friday, August 19 to Sunday, August 21

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African Culture Festival Solmspark 2011

In addition to a traditional crafts market, speciality food stalls, and a drumming workshop, the African Culture Festival at Solmspark commemorates all victims of racism and state violence. Listen to impassioned speakers, dance to the music of live reggae bands, and get your groove on in the dancehall “party zone.”

Price: Free

Location: Solmspark, Rödelheim

Times: Friday, August 19 – Sunday, August 21

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Exhibition Opening – Ragnar Kjartansson and Contemporary Photographic Art from Iceland”

Iceland is the guest country at this year’s Frankfurt Book Fair. In celebration, the Frankfurter Kunstverein presents a duo of exhibitions of Icelandic photography and video art, which opens Thursday. See Ragnar Kjartansson’s videos, installations, and photo series in the artists’ first solo exhibition in Germany. Then gaze at dramatic images of the North Atlantic island nation taken by emerging and established photo-media artists from Iceland.

Price: Free (Opening); €6 (Regular Admission)

Location: Frankfurter Kunstverein, Steinernes Haus on the Römerberg, Markt 44

Times: Thursday, August 18, 7pm (Opening); Tuesday – Friday, 11am-7pm; Thursday, 11am-9pm; Saturday & Sunday, 10am-7pm; through October 16 (Regular Hours)

Phone: 069 219 3140

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Music Outdoors – Les Trucs

The Frankfurt based duo Les Trucs unleashes its no holds barred brand of maniacal music Thursday at Kampnagel. Brace yourselves for the jarring sound collage of heavy metal beats, operatic harmonics, and hyper synthesizer cascades. You’ll be invigorated to say the least.

Price: Free

Location: Kampnagel, Jarrestrasse 20

Times: Thursday, August 18, 8pm

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Olympia Park Summer Festival

Feel like a kid again this weekend as you spin around on the tea cups, chow down on a bratwurst in a Bavarian village atmosphere, or kick back at the beach bar. The Summer Festival at Olympia Park comes to a close Sunday, so go soon, and get in as many rides as you can. It’s summertime! And the living is easy.

Price: Free

Location: Munich Olympia Park, Spiridon-Louis-Ring 21

Times: Daily, Noon-11:30pm, Sunday, 11am-11:30pm; through Sunday, August 21

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Heart on the Street

Street art and the urban environment play major roles in the work of the ten artists involved in this art show. Mixing mediums such as painting, photography, graphics, and video, the pieces present the relationship between street art and society.

Price: Free

Location: Kunstarkaden – art space of the city of Munich, Sparkassenstrasse 3

Times: Tuesday – Saturday, 1-7pm; through Saturday, August 27

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Four injured as WWII bomb explodes near Munich train station

Four people were injured, one of them seriously, when a World War II bomb exploded at a building site near Munich's main train station on Wednesday, emergency services said.

Smoke rises after the WWII bomb exploded on a building site in Munich.
Smoke rises after the WWII bomb exploded on a building site in Munich. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Privat

Construction workers had been drilling into the ground when the bomb exploded, a spokesman for the fire department said in a statement.

The blast was heard several kilometres away and scattered debris hundreds of metres, according to local media reports.

Images showed a plume of smoke rising directly next to the train tracks.

Bavaria interior minister Joachim Herrmann told Bild that the whole area was being searched.

Deutsche Bahn suspended its services on the affected lines in the afternoon.

Although trains started up again from 3pm, the rail operator said there would still be delays and cancellations to long-distance and local travel in the Munich area until evening. 

According to the fire service, the explosion happened near a bridge that must be passed by all trains travelling to or from the station.

The exact cause of the explosion is unclear, police said. So far, there are no indications of a criminal act.

WWII bombs are common in Germany

Some 75 years after the war, Germany remains littered with unexploded ordnance, often uncovered during construction work.

READ ALSO: What you need to know about WWII bomb disposals in Germany

However, most bombs are defused by experts before they explode.

Last year, seven World War II bombs were found on the future location of Tesla’s first European factory, just outside Berlin.

Sizeable bombs were also defused in Cologne and Dortmund last year.

In 2017, the discovery of a 1.4-tonne bomb in Frankfurt prompted the evacuation of 65,000 people — the largest such operation since the end of the war in Europe in 1945.