A year ago, when I was visiting in exploring Pyongyang, I dared going into side streets. I don’t think it’s forbidden, but I also don’t think, it might be something the government wants the outside to see. Not without a reason are the big buildings built at the side of the grand streets. They shroud the true face of Pyongyang and it isn’t “Visiting Card Pyongyang”, that interests me, land and people interest me more. It always has and it always will: the authentic. Looking at the first picture I posted here, see beyond the big building in front, look past the sight protective wall and see the small houses built inside the block. It’s all over Pyongyang. Look it up on Google Maps. Past the big buildings, you will find so many small buildings. Contrast.
So this is what this city comes down to in my mind. This city was built out of ruins from the Korean War and is relatively young. The city planners might a have asked themselves, how they do it in other leading countries, having Moscow as one of the great influences in mind. ‘How did they do it and how can we make it look the same?’ That is the question, that pops into my mind when I ask myself… What the hell were they thinking?! There’s no continuous plan here, no overall sketch and absolutely no thought. “Just make it look good from afar. We won’t let them come near.” But I managed to come near and to see the difference.
Pictures taken 2008