My favourite kind of day is spent with guests of my PhotoBookMuseum. In fact, I’m planning one of those days right now — with none other than Dr. Alderete! He isn’t actually a doctor, but a brilliant Argentine graphic artist from Mexico City. Jorge, which is his first name, will be supporting us with a photo book project and I’m planning a day to show him around the city. We’ll start the morning at my place on Körnerstrasse in Ehrenfeld, where I’ve lived for over 15 years.
A coffee at Van Dyck on Körnerstrasse is guaranteed to get the day off to a great start. Then we’ll walk through Ehrenfeld towards the city centre. My top three tips for visitors to Cologne are the Kolumba Museum, Gerhard Richter’s stained-glass window on the south side of Cologne Cathedral and, via the Museum Ludwig, a walk over the Rhine to the Schäl Sick (which is local dialect for the ‘wrong side’). If the legendary Kölsch pub Lommerzheim on Siegesstrasse is open, we’ll have our first Kölsch beer there with our lunch. And then we’ll head over to Deutzer Freiheit to Art Book Cologne, a secret paradise for all art book lovers! Owner Bernd Detsch really knows how to make you feel welcome. His lovely team will show us a few gems and of course we’ll end up buying something!
Hopefully it won’t take too long for us to head back over to Ehrenfeld so we can also pay Atila Tosun a visit for some kofta kebabs at his butcher’s shop on Körnerstrasse. Fortified and ready for the night, we’ll cross over the street to K 18 where we’ll check out the private exhibition space and let the curator Mr JMK guide us round his current show. Later on in the evening, we can head to Höttche, one of the last remaining original pubs in Ehrenfeld, for more Kölsch! You can’t get more authentic than that!. As the Körnerstrasse also boasts a club, Nachtigall, we may well end up there, dancing the night away in the basement, before starting all over again in the morning! But no doubt things will turn out very differently because in Cologne you’re constantly meeting new, friendly people who invite you to join them on unexpected paths. So on that note: welcome to Cologne, Doctor A.!