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When you’re in Berlin you can’t miss checking out some of the Berlin street art, it is certainly a must on any Berlin itinerary, and is something that makes Berlin unique. One of the best places to conduct a Berlin street art tour is in the Kreuzberg neighbourhood. Kreuzberg is known for its vibrant, alternative and diverse population, consisting of punk movements and alternative subcultures.
This Berlin street art tour guide aims to help you conduct your own self-guided, and therefore free tour of some of the best Berlin street art and graffiti throughout Kreuzberg.
BERLIN STREET ART TOUR: EXPLORING KREUZBERG
Getting Around Kreuzberg
There are lots of tours on offer which introduce you to Berlin art including Berlin free walking tours, graffiti tours and alternative tours. The Berlin Sandeman Free Tour is something I really recommend any Berlin traveller taking part in when they first arrive in the city! I chose to hire a bike for exploring Kreuzberg and conducted by own self-guided street art tour of Berlin. I hired my bike from Lila Bike Hire at Schönhauser Allee 41. Cycling is a really fun and efficient way of seeing the city and exploring Kreuzberg, and I really recommend a Berlin bike tour! However, I have included some information on how to access some of these murals by public transport.
My Berlin street art tour started on Wilhelmstraße, a major thoroughfare in the central Mitte and Kreuzberg districts of Berlin.
Unter der Hand
The next mural on my Berlin street art tour is found on Heinrich Heine Straße, which you can access on the U8 U-bahn line. Unter der Hand is by Andreas von Chrzanowski, part of the Frankfurt-based street art crew CASE aka CASE Maclaim, of which he has been a member since 2000. Von Chrzanowski is regarded as a ‘pioneer of the photorealistic street art movement’
Hands are a recurring theme in CASE’s work: “Power and movement have individually played key roles in the backbone of his German roots, inspiring him to communicate his strong messages of unity and power by overlaying hands. The overlaying “movement” is not just the physical body movement but political movement, generally being left without a particular context in which the viewer is left to visualize the remaining story and/or emotion, relative to their current situations. Having travelled to over 20 countries he has literally left his fingerprints in each, continually leaving bits and pieces of a language understood by all – after all a hand gesture can tell a thousand words”.
Like Unter der Hand, Face Time is located on Heinrich Heine Straße, however this is closer to Mortizplatz on the U-Bahn. Face Time was produced by the Berlin based duo Various and Gould. Since they began working together in 2005, they have endeavoured to ‘look for the beauty in everyday life to create bright images, inserting encrypted messages’.
For Face Time Project the duo created a series of faces made from collaged heads in an attempt to assemble various facial parts. This 250m tall mural shows a huge face consisting of a multicoloured and mixed patterned faces, that is supposed to seem more authentic than most of the faces we see every day on the news. The artists themselves stated ‘the truth is that it is more of a patchwork identity, which infers a celebration of human diversity and insinuating that we should look behind the ‘perfect’ images promoted to us on social media’.
One the best-known works of Berlin street art is this stencil style piece by Victor Ash. It was created in 2007 as part of the ‘Backjumps Urban Art Festival’. The mural was inspired by the US-Soviet space race The Cosmonaut is located on Mariannenstraße which is 5 minutes away from Kottbusser Tor U-bahn station. Catch the U1 here to find the mural. This is probably my favourite piece on this Berlin Street Art Tour.
East Side Gallery
Of course, no Berlin street art tour is complete without visiting the East Side Gallery, the ultimate Berlin street art gallery. This open-air gallery spans across over 1km of Berlin wall remains. There are over 100 murals to check out here and is regarded as a heritage protected landmark. Check out more on the East Side gallery in my guide to visiting Berlin. The East Side Gallery is certainly an example of the best street art in Berlin and is a must on any Berlin itinerary.
Mitte: Cafe Kino (Cafe Cinema)
Right in the heart of Berlin is another unmissable street art spot. Although not in Kreuzberg, if you are conducting a Berlin cycling tour it will be easy for you to venture over to this area to enjoy some of the best graffiti in the city. Down a small alley just off Rosenthaler Strasse is Haus Schwarzenberg – it’s near Alexanderplatz. You can also find Cafe Cinema (Cafe Kino) here!
Enjoyed this Berlin Street Art Tour?
Check out some more of my Germany content:
- Berlin 3 Day ItineraryThe German capital is a vast and vibrant city with so much to do, so follow this Berlin 3 Day Itinerary to make the most of your time there.
- Berlin Street Art Tour: Exploring KreuzbergThe graffiti in and around Berlin is something any traveller will want to check out. See how you can conduct your own free Berlin Street Art Tour here.
- Visiting Berlin: A City GuideVisiting Berlin is likely on most travellers bucket list. Here is my guide of the best ways to spend your time visiting Berlin.