What´s so magic about Dangast?

We´ll have visitors from US these days. From New England as well as from the other side, San Francisco on the Westcoast. Among other things, they want to get to know the region. And because the northsea coastline is part of it, we got the idea to go to Dangast. It´s the nearest point to reach from Oldenburg – but that´s not the only reason, why I want to go there with them. It´s kind of magic in the sorrounding. What is it about?

First of all: when you get to Dangast, there is no dyke. You can go straight ahead down the street to the water – if it´s there. Most of the time it is not. This situation is unique along the whole german northseacoastline and it depends on a iceage sand deposite, which is about 11 meters high. It reminds a bit of baltic steep coasts. Dangast itself could be in the neighborhood of Nida or near peninsula Hel in Poland. Maybe that´s the reason why many painters and sculptors came here. Maybe it´s the fascinating light – not only when the sun is rising or in the sunset, but the whole day through.

Dangast is the oldest german „Nordseebad“ (Northseabath) – and the most southerly as well.  It was founded in the late 18 th century and in the early 20th century the „Brückemaler“ Schmidt-Rottluff and Erich Heckel stayed and worked here. Max Pechstein followed them, inspired from their works.
Franz Radziwill, expressionist in his early days and magic-realist later on, lived here since he died in the 1980´s. He came here in 1921, that year when Josef Beuys was born whose life line crosses Dangast in the early 70´s: he an his students – Anatol and Grenzer –  came to this artist-colony and you can still see some of there works at the Kurhaus-Beach. Anatols „Jade“ is still looking to the west from the end of a wooden path. Grenzers almost 4 tons heavy „Phallus“ remains since more then 30 years. Upright.

I think: even if you don´t want to – you can´t resist the magic of Dangast. That´s the reason why we go there with some folks from the other side of the western world. They got to see it, to understand why we and I life here.

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