Today’s witness for diversity for “Crossing Identities” is Gregor.  Gregor was born in Germany and has a German-French background. Growing up, his parents consciously exposed him to countless divergent experiences. From food of different parts of the world to holidays to international metropoles as well as to the french countryside. The school Gregor went to, gave him the opportunity to form friendships with students with backgrounds from manifold countries.

Photo: Semra Sevin, "Crossing Identities"

Photo: Semra Sevin, “Crossing Identities”

Gregors parent’s strategy worked out! Whenever he travels to a place, where people, music, the food or life is homogenised and has too many known denominators, he feels uncomfortable. To a degree, that he wants to leave after a while. The way Gregor expressed himself, showed a deep need for diversity in order to be happy in his life, not just a tendency.

Photo: Semra Sevin, "Crossing Identities"

Photo: Semra Sevin, “Crossing Identities”

Gregor loves Berlin and thinks that the neighbourhood of Kreuzberg is the most fun part of town. Guess what! It has the greatest variety regarding its inhabitants, restaurants, cafes and cultural scene. Kreuzberg also managed to keep it s original grungy gritty look. As opposed to many other Berlin districts that, with gentrification, became slick and monotonous.

Photo: Semra Sevin, "Crossing Identities"

Photo: Semra Sevin, “Crossing Identities”

In Germany, with the new wave of refugee immigrants, there is a lot of talk about diversity. Campaigns and money put into cultural initiatives for the refugees will not replace an actively created environment including kindergarden, school, work and media, which represents all migrants, not only the new arrivals. Starting “Crossing Identities” I did not expect the solutions for diversity to be as simple as that!

“Crossing Identities was kindly sponsored by the Berlin Senate for the 50y jubilee of the partner cities Los Angeles and Berlin in 2017.

Writer & Photographer Semra Sevin

 

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