Berlin, Mon Amour
by Donald Kuspit
Itís almost dusk, and Iím driving down Bismarckstrasse, towards the Schloss Charlottenburg, on an avenue lined with lamps designed by Albert Speer, Hitlerís architect, an organizational genius, and, according to the psychoanalyst Alexander Mitscherlich, homoerotically attracted to him. The lamps have a soft cocktail lounge glow, the kind of softness conducive to erotic fantasies. Also, ironically, considering how "degenerate" the Nazis thought modern art to be, theyíre eloquently modernist -- spartan geometry with a bit of ornamental edging, giving them a defiant yet ingratiating simplicity, calm composure with a touch of tension.