October 2017 / April 2018, Berlin
Rootless and extravagant dreamers, opinionated and unprejudiced, sharply-witted, independent and faintly narcissistic. These are the Berlin kids in all their beautiful contradictions.
M A R I A
Maria used to be Isa’s landlady in her first Berlin flat. We met once for dinner 6 years back and kinda kept indirectly in touch through socials. I had this memory of a waggish, independent, tough, opinionated and incredibly beautiful girl and, when I started thinking about the Berlin Kids project, she immediately came to my mind. What I didn’t know back then was how sensitive, self critical and wholehearted this young woman is, as soon as you scratch slightly beyond the surface. We opened up, realised we had much more in common that we could think of, made fun of ourselves and of each other and genuinely became good friends.
MARIA BY MARIA
Name: Maria-Elise Thon
In Berlin since: birth
Where did you live before moving to Berlin: Berlin, Madrid, Munich
Profession: Set Designer
Dream profession: Set Designer
How would you describe yourself: cheerful and angry at once, proud of myself but also highly self-critical, curious, ambitious, travel and surf addict
Biggest inspirations: my father, my grandmother, Henri Rousseau, Henri Magritte, other surrealist painters, Goethe, Schiller, Mann, you name it. Dr. Mark Benecke.
Favourite activities in Berlin: The further away from Neukölln/Kreuzberg, the better!
The place to be in Berlin: Definitely NOT Kreuzkölln! Treptow area, Rummelsburg, I really like eastern districts!
Your best Berlin story: when I went to a 2€ photo box in Kreuzberg, drunk, with my friend to take photos of us being super happy! One minute later, someone opens the curtain of the photo box and vomits straight in my face! The photos picture the „seconds-before-situation“ so hilariously! mazl tov!
Picture yourself in 10 years: hopefully not living in Berlin anymore. Perhaps at the beach in Mexico, surfing but also working. Hawaii would be great, too!
“So there was the day when I realised that, for all my life, I have cared so much about my appearance on others. Am I dressed well, am I too fat, am I showing too much skin, am I too pale? I felt so much pressure on myself. How about we all start to be just the persons we would like to be. I will not have anyone telling me ever again what is the ideal beauty and what is not. It’s all natural.”
For me as a Berliner, there are plenty of things that I hate about this city. It is so dynamic, people come and go all the time, and many of them come to Berlin to figure out who they are and what they want to do with their lives. But it seems like everyone is so focused on their own interests and desires, that sometimes they forget about everyone else around. There are times where I feel like people don’t see me, and that is when I feel the loneliest.
“Oh yes, my heart got broken so many times in my life. People who know me would possibly argue that it is, to some extend, the drama I simply tend to attract like a magnet. If something upsets me, I argue. And it is not the spoken words that hurt me, but rather what’s left unsaid. I often don’t believe that people tell me the truth when I ask for it, because they cannot admit the truth to themselves in the first place. How shall we be honest to others if we can’t first be honest to ourselves? My resolution for 2018 is to work on honesty, and yes, it will take me out of my comfort zone sometimes, be awkward and might hurt. But I think that everyone deserves honesty.”
Nikon N55, Petzval 58 Boheh Control, Kodak Gold 200 (35)
Lubitel 166+, Rollei 200 (120)
Miranda Sensomat RE, Kodak Gold 200 (35)