Photos and Text by Tony Ward, Copyright 2017
I have been traveling to Hamburg, Germany for 20 years. The city in many regards hasn’t changed all that much. I have stayed in various parts of this very cosmopolitan city over the years, but I find myself on this trip returning to the district of St. Pauli where all of my earliest travels to Hamburg began so many years ago. The Hotel Monopol is located on one of the most lively and exciting night life blocks, the Reeperbahn in St. Pauli’s red light district, where the sound of popular music emanates from a variety of night clubs, strip clubs and regular bars into the wee hours of every morning, especially in the summer months when tourism in Europe is at its peak.
It seems that every time I’m in St. Pauli during the summer months the traveling DOM amusement park is setup on a huge empty lot next door to the St Pauli soccer stadium. In the opposite direction I took a stroll to Cuneo my favorite Italian restaurant in all of Hamburg. It is also the longest continuously operated restaurants in all of Germany, even surviving the bombardment of World War II. Just a stones throw away from Cuneo is the famous Herberstrasse, where men can shop for a prostitute some of whom stand in front of the local Burger King carefully screening and soliciting men as they walk along the street directly in front of a police station, which apparently was quite busy as the sound of police sirens were heard as often as the music. Prostitution is legal in Hamburg and on occasion harmoniously juxtaposed against old churches in the neighborhood. There was a very large gay parade traversing through a less seedy part of town. Gun shops freely display a variety of hand guns for sale, symbols of the increasing liberal policies of today’s German government.
My main reason for this trip was to check in on a large body of photographs that were in storage at a gallery located not far from the Monopol Hotel. My agent, Ms. Suzaan Talib is presently arranging an exhibition of a group of these works stored in Hamburg. The prints are quite large, measuring 48 X 72 inches and were printed in Stuttgart, Germany in 2002. No editions. All one of kind. See the video below for more details.