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We bid farewell to Petra Gall

On 7 July 2018, Petra Gall passed away after long illness. We mourn together with her family and friends. The photographer and activist was born in Saarland in 1955 and moved to Berlin in 1981. She began to work as a self-taught photographer, founded the photography agency “Zebra” with Heidi Zimmermann, published books and calendars and worked for newspapers and magazines such as taz, Zitty, Tip or Courage.

She is the great documentarist of the feminsit and lesbian scene of West Berlin and the underground (women’s) music scene of the 1980s. Her photographs immortalized crucial events such as the Walpurgis Nights of the 1980s and 90s, Annie Sprinkle’s “Sex Kitchen” 1991 in the Berlin UFA Fabrik and the first Pride Parade in St. Petersburg in 1992.

She loved the portrait and photographed numerous protagonists such as Diamanda Galás, Nina Hagen, Nick Cave, Blixa Bargeld and Rio Reiser, the self-defense icon Martha Schedewi and Maria Zastrow, bartender of the legendary bar “Risiko”.

In the 1990s, she followed her passion of motorcycling and produced documentaries from all over the world, especially the former Soviet Union.

Schwules Museum dedicated a retrospective to her work and showed her photographs in a variety of exhibitions, among others Homosexuality_ies in 2015/16.

Her large and impressive archive was added to the museum’s collections in 2012. A part of this archive is available online at museum-digital.

(Photo: Petra Gall, self portrait, mid-1980s)