Kerstin Diehl’s apartment is reminiscent of the hair-raising Memphis model, like a comic. The PR woman still describes herself as a minimalist. A visit.
The woman has prepared herself: “I quickly painted the picture on the weekend, so that it is not so empty here,” says Kerstin Diehl, pointing to the large-format painting in the otherwise barren corridor; a kind of pop art expressionism, lines, curves, planes, in blue, orange and pink.
As if to prove this, Diehl takes out her smartphone and deletes the cell phone’s photo gallery, on which the impressive work of art has been created layer by layer. It fits perfectly in an apartment that thrives on the uncompromising play of shape and color.
“But,” says the amateur artist, looking up from her smartphone screen to examine it, “I would describe myself as a minimalist.” Anyone who hears this and looks around her brightly colored old apartment, Diehl can – PARDON – he almost declared himself crazy. After all, nothing here wants to be simple and reserved – from the orange Artemis lamp on the dining table to the striped vases and rings everywhere.
But it’s true: Basically, there isn’t that much around in the 70 square meters of her apartment on the northern edge of Prenzlauer Berg. Furniture has been carefully selected and distributed throughout the rooms, nothing you could really do without. Instead, when it comes to Diehl’s apartment, one can certainly speak of a total work of cleverly curated art, of room concepts that are close to the comic style of the Memphis group.
The association of designers and architects, textile artists and ceramists, founded in Milan in 1980, consciously resisted the will and self-esteem of large industrial clients; contrasted the cool mass product with the unique, eccentric idea. The models of the most famous representatives of Memphis, Ettore Sottsass and Michele de Lucchi look extremely childish, like large toys or furniture from a Willy Wonka-like fantasy land, like armchairs made of licorice and candies alienated from lamps. A design approach to hair growth that is currently very popular again – also with Kerstin Diehl.
In the living room, for example, an orange couch from Sofacompany is juxtaposed against a red Diehl hand-shaped armchair found on Etsy’s Bold and Mustache bench in blue. In the bedroom, plump cushions from Tarta Gelatina with wave and hourglass shapes are placed on the bed directly opposite the stark black-and-white striped wall; the red plastic seat shell from Magis joins a side table with a glass top and bright yellow legs, which Diehl purchased through Pamono. And when the PR woman isn’t traipsing through relevant online vintage stores, she’s also artistically active herself.
Colorful protozoa become psychedelic patterns, paramecia on LSD
It’s not just the large pop painting in the hallway that proves this. Diehl also painted a picture of the bedroom itself: Somberly colored organic forms proliferate in it, colorful protozoa combining to form a psychedelic pattern, like paramecia on LSD. I also painted the picture spontaneously, almost out of necessity”, says the lady of the house. “The black and white wall was suddenly too stark and cold for me, so I wanted to contrast it with some softer colors and shapes.”
All in all, the apartment in Prenzlauer Berg that Diehl moved into about two years ago is the first that she renovated from the ground up to her taste. “Other than the big mid-century sideboard that I once saved from the big junk, a few chairs and a lot of old vases from my mother and grandmother, I didn’t take anything with me,” she says.
In fact, the 1970s vases in red, yellow and turquoise are the only thing that reminds us of Diehl’s childhood, which had less to do with the ridiculous and flamboyant circles of art and fashion in which he grew up. move today PR wife. Because it’s hard to believe: a real country girl lives in an extremely urban, hyper-modern apartment.
“I come from a village of 1,200 inhabitants in Hesse, Marburg is the next biggest city, but even then it was still 25 kilometers away,” she says dryly. Kerstin Diehl describes herself as “Hungry Heart”. As someone who saw something different early, to be something different – who wanted more from life. So she went to the US, first for a year, then to Giessen to study German and history. Then for an internship in Hamburg, for a while in Düsseldorf, then in Switzerland, later again in Hamburg for eight years.
For example, Diehl was responsible for the international press for the prominent designer Philipp Plein for two years, after which he also took care of many clients from the beauty sector, such as Douglas and Schwartzkopff. Today she does press work for Nespresso and Purina, among others – and finally lives in Berlin.
“For the first time in my life, I feel like I’ve really arrived,” says Diehl. And anyone who experiences this cold-blooded woman, anyone who talks to her, can hardly imagine her anywhere but in this apartment, in this city. No wonder Kerstin Diehl, before moving, heard that legendary sentence that stirred many a hungry heart here: “You are crazy, my child, you must go to Berlin!”