Near the Arena Berlin are two photo booths and since the pandemic they were barely used at all (at least when i was there). Especially the one right before the gate of the Badeschiff has a weird vibe when no one is around; you only hear the wind and some background noise of the city. Still i had the feeling something will happen to me if i use it. It reminded me of the concept of liminal spaces; places once filled with life but are now devoid of it and “convey a sense of nostalgia, lostness, and uncertainty”1. Places that seems to exist outside of time and space without knowing what will happen next. I think the pandemic situations created many uncomfortable liminal spaces, because transitions are stressful especially if we don’t know what comes next.

In relation to the photo booth it seems to ooze the concept even more. The whole Photoautomat restauration is a project out of nostalgia and it is a bit sad to see it empty again. I don’t know if this is just reminiscence of the past, but i think it overlaps well with the general analog experience. Four shots on a polaroid like film, unique, physically real and certainly more memorable then just a Smartphone Selfie somewhere.

I hope this booths will see life again and bring joy and memories for the users.

  1. The definition of a liminal space can vary quite a bit depending on who you ask, but here is a good start. A great source is also the Reddit Sub though. ↩︎