Ute Mahler’s Portraits of Life Behind the Wall

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In the early nineteen-seventies, at the age of twenty-three, Ute Mahler began to photograph daily life in Lehnitz, in what was then East Germany, where she grew up. Lehnitz is just north of Berlin, a city that, when Mahler took these pictures, had been divided by the Berlin Wall for over a decade. Most East German photography at the time, Mahler recalled, was “sugar-coated” propaganda. Mahler, along with a few others, set out to photograph the less promising realities of life in East Germany.

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