Berlin’s Molecule Man is one of its most iconic statues. Towering over the Spree within which it stands, the statue is visible as people cross from either side of the river. Jonathan Borofsky, an American sculptor, completed the 30m aluminum statue in 1997, reminiscent of those that cropped up in Los Angeles during the 1970s. What makes this sculpture most intriguing is that it’s comprised of three two-dimensional men who are all leaning into one another. While the meaning behind this is left relatively open-ended, most believe that it is meant to symbolize the intersection point between the three localities where it stands: Treptow, Kreuzberg, and Friedrichshain.
Jeff Koons’ Balloon Flower in Potsdamer Platz is one of the city’s most notorious works of sculpture. The electric blue sheen of the stainless steel structure truly makes it look like an enormous balloon animal. Koons himself is world-famous, as one of the highest paid artists in the world. His piece, Balloon Dog (Orange) sold for $58.4 million at auction in New York, which now holds the record for the most expensive work of art by a living artist. He decided to grace Berlin with the Balloon Flower, done in his purely distinctive style in 2000.
Keith Haring’s Boxers was yet another installation in celebration of Berlin’s birthday in 1987. This one is situated in front of the world-renowned Berlin Philharmonie. The respective blue and red boxers stand at 5 meters in height, and each is punching a hole other’s head and torso. Yet, what makes this work so interesting is the notion that the boxers are actually fighting is relatively vague. Some believe the two are actually passionately embracing. The figures are designed in Haring’s distinct comic-strip style, utilizing bright, bold colors and simple designs.
Galileo stands on the water’s surface, not far from Potsdamer Platz. The structure is comprised of various metallic and wooden implements fastened together to create a large, oxidizing contraption. The structure is meant to express instantaneous motion, frozen in time. It is certainly fascinating to gaze upon it and consider Galileo‘s many different facets, which co-mingle in expressive ways, and the sculpture is best observed when it is explored from all sides. Galileo was first built in 1996, and it was acquired in 1998. Of course, based on its name, the sculpture is also meant to conjure notions of the famous astronomer’s many different scientific, planetary models.