RESTAURANT BRAZIL, BERLIN
Restaurant Brazil, Berlin (circa 1996). Unusually, I was employed part-time and spent over a year designing and painting at this popular Berlin landmark in the district of Mitte. Coming in before opening times, I would often work on, if there weren't too many guests, in a corner or up a ladder adding more and more details. Occasional fragments of Italian plaster ornaments I improved or extended with trompe l'oeil. A flag-ship restaurant in various ways, it was also my first big contract. Co-owner Klaus Schitthelm was to become my mentor on various projects for years to come. Eventually the tenancy expired and Brazil moved down the road to Kollwitz Platz to become Restaurant Lafil, which I also decorated. The landlords then gutted Brazil (and Klaus and I) totally. On my journeys I sadly lost my album of photos taken back then, and these are the few I have left. There were a lot more areas and ornaments, but you get the idea. Classical, crumbling, faded pigments, walls washed with time. Note the odd mixture of styles while I learned on the job; my love for Pompeii being the most prevalent, but also colonial, even some art-nouveua. The last picture is from the men's toilet (those are the tiles above the urinals) in which I spent a whole month. Extraordinary times indeed. It's all gone now, but I'm still proud of what I accomplished together with Klaus at his beautiful Restaurant Brazil (RIP).