top of page

Magical places - not only in Krefeld

Museums, monuments and other places steeped in history also offer the opportunity to explore the past, keep track of history and track down dusty beauties.
Sometimes I am also asked to photograph and document special places. I am happy to share these vivid photo series if I am given permission to do so. In this way, I learn interesting historical facts first-hand and gain access to places that are not normally accessible to the general public. Please click on the image to view and read.

A look behind the scenes - where women don't normally have access

Männerbund I Schlaraffia Crefeldensis I Ritterburg I Et Klöske I Friendship I Humor I Creativity
Daten Puppenbrunnen

 Bitte zu Anschauen und Lesen auf das Bild klicken.

2. Doll's fountain I Krefeld

Doll's fountain Krefeld I 1926 Derichs & Konertz 1976

The Puppenbrunnen in Krefeld is located at Südwall 30-32, 47798 Krefeld. You can reach it as a pedestrian from the Hansa Center, walking along the pedestrian zone in the direction of Kaufhof. The Puppenbrunnen is located where the pedestrian zone, Neusserstraße, crosses the Südwall. (...)

weiterlesen Puppenbrunnen

The puppet fountain is a modern art fountain with six figures that move in different ways and all have a connection to Krefeld. In summer, when the water splashes lively, this is a good opportunity for children to let their companions relax for a while. Depending on how adventurous the kids are, it can be quite a wet and happy affair.
For a long time, I couldn't find any direct evidence in my research that this beautiful fountain was the work of Bonifatius Stirnberg, who created a very similar fountain in Aachen at a similar time.
Now I am all the more pleased that I was able to find a student of the artist who is still in contact with Mr. Bonifatius Stirnberg. So with his help, with the support of the family and the information I already had, I was able to put the complete history of the doll's fountain in Krefeld on paper. Ok, trust the internet ;-)-
So follow me now together with the exceptional artist Bonifatius Stirnberg on a journey through the centuries not only in terms of fashion ...

Krefeld im November 2023/Mai 2024

Anker 1

The PUPPENBRUNNEN I KREFELD - Fashion through the centuries 

Von Samara Blue/Kerstin Ellingenhoven, Krefeld. 02.05.2024

The Puppenbrunnen in Krefeld is a counterpart to the fountain in Aachen and is located at Südwall 30-32, 47798 Krefeld. Pedestrians can reach it from the Hansa Centre by walking along the pedestrian zone in the direction of the former Kaufhof. The Puppenbrunnen is located where the Neusserstraße pedestrian zone crosses the Südwall, slightly offset to the right. It is a modern bronze fountain with six moving figures arranged around a rectangular cuboid. This is slightly larger than the lovingly crafted and detailed figures. The figures and cuboid are located on a round, slightly raised platform made of a kind of concrete, so that viewers can interact with the figures easily. The water drains into a circular depression underneath the fountain, which guarantees that the interacting visitor's shoes are reasonably dry. The name of the company that donated the fountain, Derichs & Konertz, and the dates 1926 and 1976 are apparently also cast in concrete on the side of the platform. It is assumed that 1926 is the year in which the two companies merged. 1976 commemorates the year the fountain was built. Once you have curiously walked around the fountain and taken a look at the various historical figures, you might ask yourself who was immortalised there and for what reason. As I was also very interested in this, I went on a little historical research. Starting with the Internet, which was not really informative about this particular fountain, I became aware of the doll fountain in Aachen. As it is very similar in style to the one in Krefeld, I assumed that it must be by the same artist, Bonifatius Stirnberg. However, I did not find any confirmation of this. But I did come across a gallery that represents the interests of the artist Bonifatius Stirnberg, the builder of the Aachen doll's fountain. I was able to make direct contact with a former pupil of the artist and learnt a lot about this remarkable artist and craftsman in telephone conversations. He confirmed that Mr Bonifatius was also the artist behind the doll's fountain in Krefeld, which took me a long way forward, and sent me a book by the artist. A fascinating book of fountains ... PLAY I CHANGE I UNDERSTAND... The illustrated book ‘Plastiken für die Stadt’ by Aachen artist Bonifatius Stirnberg begins with these interactive verbs. In order to gain a deeper understanding of this beautiful fountain and its significance, I would like to take a closer look at the fascinating artist and craftsman Bonifatius Stirnberg, starting with his biography: *He was born on 20/02/1933 in Freienohl/Sauerland (Meschede). *Only 15 years later, in 1948, he began an apprenticeship as a wood sculptor, which he successfully completed in 1951 with the journeyman's examination. *In 1953, he also completed the subsequent carpentry apprenticeship in the same year with the journeyman's examination. *In 1957, he passed his master craftsman's examination as a wood sculptor in Cologne. From 1953 to 1959, he studied interior design and sculpture at the Werkkunde Schule Aachen. *Even before completing his studies, he worked as a freelance artist from 1958. *From 1962 to 1966, he expanded his repertoire and creative skills by studying at the Düsseldorf Art Academy in the sculpture department under Prof. Josef Beuys. Prof Josef Beuys. *Since 1973 he has been working in his own studio in Aachen, which also includes a separate, well-equipped bronze foundry. All his works of art are produced in this studio, from the initial idea to the final touches. Even now, at the ripe old age of over 90, he can still be found in his workshop in Aachen every day. Stirnberg was obviously very interested in the nature of cities/his city. Houses, building facades, squares, places of interest, green spaces and much more are among the parts of a city that are accessible to all citizens and visitors and that can ultimately also be found on corresponding postcards. However, these cards often present a view that has been embellished with the help of wide-angle lenses and extreme photo editing. Bonifatius Stirnberg obviously has a divergent view of this, which is reflected in many ways in his art. After all, a city is represented by more than just such fair-weather views. Every city has its very own history, starting with its name, which has changed again and again over the centuries, just like its external appearance. We often judge the importance of a city by its appearance. If it is doing well, it is lavishly built and the city flourishes. Evidence of these good times can always be found in buildings and landmarks. Witnesses of the bad times, on the other hand, are often not on public display, but only preserved in special places. You have to explicitly seek them out if you are interested in these topics. It is similar with modern works of art. These, too, are often hidden/carried away in various museums, for which you often have to pay a considerable entrance fee. If you don't want to deal with them, you simply don't go near them. If this modern art then suddenly appears on the outside, e.g. on the walls of buildings, walls or bridges, it is often met with incomprehension. Yet this art could also be a living reminder of past times and historical aspects. Although they will be passed down for a while and told by older people in particular, at some point they too will be forgotten, like the smells of a bakery or the drape of a certain dress tailored according to historical fashion. Dead remains such as walls, stones, etc. often survive for centuries and therefore much longer, but they no longer have a living face. Only old trees can sometimes act as living witnesses to what a person once experienced with them. This is where Balthasar Stirnberg's works of art come in. His figures with lively faces and contemporary clothing are also intended to appeal to visitors with little artistic experience, e.g. children who like to look at, feel and try out the world with unbiased eyes. If public artworks are located in places with a lot of space around them, people often go to these places specifically because they want to see this particular work of art. Stirnberg's artistic fountains, on the other hand, are often found in rather obscure places, at crossroads, narrow alleyways or sometimes on the grounds of nurseries and schools. Inevitably, you come across them again and again in everyday life and they seem to cross people's everyday paths spontaneously. These fountains always have a special connection to the place and/or the city where they can be found. The figures have movable limbs so that the visitor can always move them into different poses and relationships to each other. A voyage of discovery into the past, not just for children, although they are always attracted by the various waterways. So that they don't have to get completely wet after their playful exploration tour, the streams of water in Stirnberg's fountain are designed in such a way that the cheerful water player realises that water is wet and makes them wet if they play too wildly, and can row back a little or flee the danger zone prematurely. Through this unbiased, playful engagement with historical figures, their stories and destinies, young people can often learn more and more easily than in history lessons. This is exactly what art in general, and Balthasar Stirnberg's art in particular, can/should do. The Krefeld Doll Fountain can also be found in the centre of Südwall 30-32, 47798 Krefeld, on the daily footpaths of the people of Krefeld. Although it no longer carries water in the colder seasons, the glittering drops of water quickly cast a spell over visitors hurrying along in the nicer weather. Again and again, someone stops and looks. They feel carefully, then a little more boldly, to see what they can move and how. Usually it doesn't stop with just one spectator. There are several more, so sometimes it wasn't easy to take photos of just the fountain. ‘Fashion through the centuries’ is the title of the Krefeld doll's fountain. A theme that the residents of the velvet and silk city could relate to when it was erected in 1975. It was the intention of the artist and probably also of the donating company Derichs & Konertz that not only the residents could identify with his art in their city, but also that visitors could take something interesting home with them. This fountain is one of Balthasar Stirnberg's earlier works and will be almost 50 years old in 2024. It has already lost a few feathers during this time. Shortly after its construction, a figure was stolen and it was only found again by chance during a police operation almost 20 years later. Unfortunately, there is always some fool who thinks he has to immortalise himself on the work of art by splashing paint on it. In the meantime, the ravages of time are also gnawing away at this work of art and fine moss is spreading here and there. The wooden parts are also not forever immune to wind and weather. But even if Krefeld can unfortunately no longer be regarded as a city of velvet and silk from my point of view, this fountain still stands in its place and demonstrates a piece of immortality, indeed history, with its valuable, basically resistant material. History for the former velvet and silk town on the Lower Rhine and also a piece of artistic history from the life of the exceptional artist and craftsman Bonifatius Stirnberg. Personally, I would be very happy to see the fountain renovated, not least because it is a piece of history for me, but also because the valuable and resistant bronze material used stands for durability and endurance. -Samara Blue/Kerstin Ellinghoven. Krefeld in March 2024

Quellen:

Galerie-am-elisengarten.de:Bonifatius Stirnberg - Galerie Petzold - deutsch (galerie-am-elisengarten.de)

Plastiken für die Stadt von Bonifatius Stirnberg

Emile Paes (ehemaliger Schüler)

Krefeld im November 2023/im Mai2024

3. Wildpferdefang 2019 - Dülmen/Merfelder Bruch

3. Wildpferdefang Dülmen

About the special honor of being a catcher

While looking for 2-3 animal pictures for another project, I stumbled across my folder with almost 900 pictures that were taken in 2019 during a visit to the wild horse capture in Dülmen with my sister. As it's naturally not easy to choose from so many pictures and, as a horse girl since childhood, the wild horses in Dülmen are a particularly magical place for me, these beautiful, wild horses have their own section in my collection of magical places.
Enjoy impressions of a wild rodeo around the corner in my native Westphalia. Information about the little horses can be found in the pictures and here (...)