Facets of a Changing City
Odessa: Facetten einer Stadt im Wandel
By Joachim Baumann and Uwe Moosburger
Fr. Ant. Niedermayr, Regensburg, Germany, 2003, 149 pages, hardcover,
English and German text.
The Germans from Russia Heritage Collection is pleased to provide
this fascinating and outstanding book, Odessa: Facets of a Changing
City. The book includes impressive photographs and excellent
text. There is a section titled, "A Brief German History of
Odessa," with photographs and text from Neuburg and Grossliebental,
former villages of the Liebental District, near Odessa, Ukraine.
There are stories and photographs about the St. Paul's Lutheran Church
in Odessa with the new pastor's house built in 2002 next to the
Odessa is a young city, only little more than 200 years old. Nevertheless
it has much to offer: architectural treasures such as the opera
house, musical geniuses like David Oistrach, world famous monuments
such as the legendary 'Potemkin' Stairway - these are just some
of the highlights of the Ukrainian port by the Black Sea. Journalist
Joachim Baumann from Berlin and press photographer Uwe Moosburger
from Odessa's sister city of Regensburg set out to discover the
secrets of the metropolis which is home to a million inhabitants.
They explored the historic city centre and its cultural attractions,
visited local entrepreneurs and experienced daily life with all
its idiosyncrasies and contrasting impressions. The result is a
very personal portrait of this major city, richly illustrated and
with texts in both English and German with 150 pages that are both
entertaining and full of information.
The idea of writing this book was conceived while accompanying
an aid convoy travelling from Regensburg in Bavaria to Odessa and
back in May 2001.
The two cities of Regensburg, Germany and Odessa, Ukraine have
cooperated since 1990 and several times each year aid is sent to
the Black Sea from Regensburg, the cargo consisting mainly of clothing,
food, medical equipment and presents for disadvantaged children.
These items are desperately needed in Odessa and, in spite of certain
difficulties encountered with the border guards, customs and officialdom
in general, they do reach their proper destination.
In spite of the existence of these regular contacts, comparatively
little is known in Regensburg and elsewhere about the 'Pearl of
the Black Sea.' We therefore decided to shed some light on the life
of this intriguing city by combining photography with written information
in the form of a book.
In preparing this, we were fascinated by the constant confrontation
with all kinds of contradictory impressions: the old and the new,
the beautiful and the ugly, the poor and the rich.
Odessa is a city of contrast. Contrast is ever-present. This book
is an invitation to come on a journey to Odessa. In writing the
book, we have made a very personal selection of what we will present.
And, in keeping with the humor typical of Odessa, we would like
to begin by giving a very important piece of advice for newcomers
to Odessa, "Never step on a man-hole cover! It is probably
insecurely fixed and underneath are the catacombs."
About the authors
Baumann, born in 1954 in Weimar, studied physics at Odessa's Metchnikov
University from 1973 to 1978. Since 1983, he has worked as a science
for various radio stations. At present, he is employed with Deutschland
Uwe Moosburger, born in 1964 in Neumarkt/Oberpfalz, trained as
a journalist with the Mittelbayerische Zeitung in Regensburg from
1985 to 1986. Since 1987 he has worked for the newspaper as a journalist
and press photographer. In 1999 he was winner of the Eberhard-Woll-Prize
awarded by the Regensburg Press Club.
Historic map of Odessa from the year
Snacking on sunflower seeds is popular.
But selling them is not going to make anyone rich fast.
Paul's Lutheran Church was destroyed by a fire in 1976. In
2002, the pastor's house was rebuilt next to the ruin.
Odessa Opera House is considered one of the most beautiful
buildings of its kind in the world and can accommodate 1,600
by Mikhail Golubouski
by Susanne Wiedamann