reasons for becoming a marxist

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After meeting for a cup of tea and a nice long chat with a friend last week in Düsseldorf, I went for a walk on the local high street, Königsallee, with its expensive shops. Of course I didn’t want to go shopping, but rather I thought that it would make an appropriate place for taking pictures of the more eccentric local wildlife. Düsseldorf is one of these places with way too many rich people. The outcome of the walk obviously had to be a little series on consumerism and inequality. By the way, my own brand of consumerism was to buy a book at my favourite local bookstore, the Sternverlag. For some reason the philosophy section was much smaller than I remembered. I always thought it was a huge bookstore, but I guess once you’re used to the bookstores of Berlin even that one is small in comparison.

All pictures taken with: Olympus Pen E-PL3 and Panasonic Lumix 20mm f/1.7 ASPH.

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

Here I was still in a more normal area. Something I’ve noticed: there are lots of numbers on clothes. I bet one day I can make a series ranging with all the numbers from 1-99. This one would be number 96.

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

Maybe a future oppressor? The shackles are already hanging from the belt.

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

Looking at expensive bling.

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

Textbook consumerists.

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

They seemed somewhat appalled. Funny how they precisely mirror each other in their attitude.

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

More normal people were around as well, enjoying the nice weather.

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

Workers building a new store that they probably won’t be able to afford.

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

Well, they were on break actually.

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

Cute girl. Children usually notice my camera, because it’s often on eye-level with them.

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

This was taken in the more normal part of the shopping area. They were obviously coming from the cheapest store with the worst quality – disposable fashion for one season. Not sure what her jumper really says, but to me it looks like “Loveless”, which is actually unsurprising since I like My Bloody Valentine.

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

Difficult lighting conditions. Part of the way I had the sun in the back, but returning to the subway I was facing the sun and got quite a bit of glare.

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

It looks like their amusement is about her glowing fingers! Superhero in disguise?

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

The peace sign has become another meaningless symbol exploited by the fashion industry. Must be sad for the hippies.

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

This could be just about anywhere. One thing I noticed is that shops I had only seen abroad have been appearing in Germany as well, like Primark which I knew from England and Calzedonia which I saw first in Spain. Conformism is global now.

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

I was waiting for the train back to suburbia. Commuting is very common around Düsseldorf, because it is rather densely populated industrial area where one city goes over into the next one. Living in one town, working in a second and meeting for a coffee in a third town is rather common, just as commuting more than one hour each way to work or university. In Düsseldorf I actually had course mates at university who had a commute of more than 2 hours every morning and had to get up at 5am to be in time for 9 am lectures.

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

© Lilly Schwartz 2014

Comments

  • Kevin

    I enjoyed these photos.

    • Lilly Schwartz

      Thanks Kevin!

  • Great series, Lilly! That final shot is really beautiful.

    • Lilly Schwartz

      Thanks Richard! My black-and-white-spidey-sense was tingling on that one 😉 Very difficult lighting conditions – dark station, but strong narrow light coming from the end of the platform. It needed the perfect angle to get the tonality balanced and so this was in part luck. A moment later those two sleeping guys on the right got up and left and in all other attempts either the composition of the lighting was off.

  • Hi Lilly, I’ve read your thoughts of getting ever closer in your upcoming projects. I agree completely. You should look at this work of Alan Barr if you like https://www.flickr.com/photos/abarr/ He uses a Ricoh GR wich has a 28mm fullframe equivalent lens. The fact that this cam has a leaf shutter makes it virtually silent so people won’t notice you taking a photo. I used my Lumix LX5 the same way very successful too. If you like have a look at my streetphoto’s at: https://www.flickr.com/photos/33689131@N07/

    Best regards,
    Jeroen

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