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Christa Betz, tenant in Gropiusstadt

‘Yes, we’ve lived this apartment dry, so to speak’, Christa Betz says with a smile. She moved here from Zehlendorf with her husband and daughter in 1966. ‘We were very happy about the new flat and even the school was just around the corner’, she adds. In fact, the school took on a special meaning in their lives. Their daughter studied there and she established the school library herself. Her husband, the late art teacher, painter and graphic artist Rainer Betz, also helped to shape the school and worked with the students on art projects. In the neighbouring Protestant parish in Gropiusstadt, a picture of him also hangs in the church. His works were exhibited in many galleries and he also painted in front of his own front door, in the former wash house, which he shared with a friend. His pictures are stored here, too, and it is also where readings, for example, are privately held. These are organised by Christa Betz with friends and for friends on a small scale. Christa Betz remained working with books in the neighbouring town library, which she later went on to manage.

She is a woman with a wide range of interests, a fact quickly apparent when you talk to her and look around her apartment. No room without books, no room without pictures, no room without wonderful mementos.

View on Gropiusstadt from the south

‘There are still some people living here who moved in with us back then and I get along very well with the new ones who’ve joined us’, she says. Her daughter, however, has moved to Brandenburg and lives in Ludwigsfelde. Christa Betz can easily reach her though, because she still drives and it is not far from Gropiusstadt to Ludwigsfelde.