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On the occasion of the anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, the GDR Museum publishes on Google Arts & Culture the digital exhibition "The Painted Utopia - The 'Praise of Communism'" about the monumental fresco of the same name by the artist Ronald Paris. 

© DDR Museum, Berlin 2017
This fresco once hung in the House of Statistics in East Berlin and has been shown in the DDR Museum since 2010.

The online exhibition is available here free of charge in German and English.

In 1969/1970 Paris painted the eleven meter long fresco for the conference room of the Haus der Statistik. It was inspired by the poem of the same name by Bertolt Brecht, who described communism as "the simple that is difficult to make".  Thanks to the high-resolution images, viewers* can recreate the utopia and visions of the time.

The impressions are supplemented by short texts by the scientific director of the DDR Museum, Dr. Stefan Wolle. "This unique contemporary testimony tells of the victory of the working class and traces the historical path to it. Ronald Paris draws on the visual language of the Middle Ages and other epochs. At the same time, he combines his commitment to communist utopia with a criticism of the existing system," says Wolle.    

The fall of the Wall finally sealed the failure of socialism in the GDR. After the closure of the building of the former House of Statistics in 2008 and due to the planned demolition, the GDR Museum saved the fresco in 2010 and invested 20,000 euros in its restoration. Since then it is on display in the DDR Museum.   

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