Thursday, February 05, 2009

Set in Stone

At Your Feet 175 w

The attraction of window shopping and people watching sometimes works against the intentions of city planners and architects. When I took all the photographs of the floor in this particular shopping mall in Düsseldorf many passers-by looked at me in astonishment wondering what I was up to. In the Kö Galerie in Königsallee the floor has been adorned with brass plaques commemorating famous people with a Düsseldorf connection. I have never ever seen anybody stop and read what it says on the plaques.

They are spread out in a symmetrical pattern throughout the cross-shaped mall. I do not know the exact number, but I have chosen my Famous Four to show you.

Heinrich Heine Paul Klee


Robert Schumann Clara Schumann

(From Wikipedia)

Christian Johann Heinrich Heine (13 December 1797 in Düsseldorf – 17 February 1856 in Paris) was a journalist, essayist, and one of the most significant German romantic poets. He is remembered chiefly for selections of his lyric poetry, many of which were set to music in the form of lieder (art songs) by German composers

Paul Klee (IPA: [kleː]) (18 December 1879 – 29 June 1940) was a Swiss painter of German nationality.

...Klee also taught at the Düsseldorf Academy from 1931 to 1933...

Robert Schumann,[1] sometimes given as Robert Alexander Schumann,[2] (8 June 1810 – 29 July 1856) was a German composer, aesthete and influential music critic. He is one of the most famous Romantic composers of the 19th century.

In 1850 Schumann succeeded Ferdinand Hiller as musical director at Düsseldorf, but he was a poor conductor and quickly aroused the opposition of the musicians.

Clara Josephine Wieck (September 13, 1819 – May 20, 1896) was a German musician, one of the most distinguished pianists of the Romantic era, as well as a composer. Her prestige — she became known as "the high priestess of music" — exerted over a 61-year concert career, changed the format and repertoire of the piano concert and the tastes of the listening public. Her husband was composer Robert Schumann. After her marriage she was known as Clara Schumann, however she had achieved considerable fame prior to her marriage, as Clara Wieck.




oreneta said...

What a lovely idea those plaques are, I know there are precedents, the Hollywood walk of stars, and the graves set in the floor in places like Westminster....but still, very cool.

CanadianSwiss said...

Yes, I remember seeing these in Düdo, but I never thought of taking pictures of them. I did however stop to look at a few. I wonder how many Düsseldorfer know about these.

swenglishexpat said...

Oreneta - Excellent idea, if only more people would discover them!
CS - When I spotted them I didn't have my camera with me for once, so I had to come back especially for the photos. Silly me!

GutsyWriter said...

What does that say about people's focus. They must have been shocked at you taking photos of the ground. Some of those are newer and shinier than others. Thanks for sharing. Very interesting.

matthew_in_ham said...

I was learning about the Schumanns' connection to Dusseldorf only yesterday. I was catching up with some podcasts and listened to the Radio 3's Composer of The Week programme about them broadcast back in December. I liked the story about the choir refusing to let him conduct them!

swenglishexpat said...

GW - I think the difference in shine or light is due to the fact that I could not use flash because of the reflection. The light varied with the surrounding shop lights and people getting in the way of it.

Matthew - What a coincidence! Yes, executing music is one thing, and leading/directing it something totally different.