Lots of places and buildings I grew up with are disappearing. Usually they have to demolish constructions because of the asbestos they used. Asbestos is an extremely heat-resistant material which has been proven to cause cancer. My primary school does not exist anymore and my favorite building in Berlin, the International Congress Center (ICC), has to deal with the same problem. Like myself, the architects of the ICC, Ralf Schüler and his wife Ursulina Schüler-Witte were both born in Berlin. The ICC was the biggest project of their career, which also included the U-Bahnhof Blissestrasse, the infamous Bierpinsel and U-Bahnhof Schlossstrasse.
The ICC took 8 years to be completed, in the time from 1971 to 1979. Despite its one-of-a kind design the Schülers never really reached international success. As their last building created, the ICC holds all the aesthetic ideas and energy from their entire career. It will be close down in march.
This big spaceship fascinates me and every time I enter the grounds I discover something new. The mixture of materials and angles hold some of my childhood memories, as a part of the Berlin I used to know. Built directly next to the Autobahn it was also the first thing I saw as a kid on our return to Berlin after holidays.
Every time I see this massive structure I feel at home, simultaneously happy and sad.