City of Paradoxes

Lviv is positioned exactly in the centre of Europe. For centuries, this fact has brought not only economic and cultural prosperity to Lviv, but also disaster. Amsterdam mapmaker Herman Zonderland embeds the fascinating history in an exclusive cartographic presentation.

The series of maps shows how Lviv has been ravaged by its own history. The bloody creation of the nation-states, the terror of Stalin, the Holocaust, the large expulsions, communism and post communism, Lviv had to live through all of it. Also, each successive ruler changed the name of the city: Lemberg, Lwów or Lvov. Only in 1991, after Ukrainian independence, does Lviv receive its current name. Having been a Central-European metropolis in past times, Lviv once again is demoted to being a provincial town, this time in a former Soviet state not far from the external frontier of the European Union. After the Schengen Agreement (2007) it became difficult for Ukrainians to cross that frontier. At the same time, a geopolitical struggle for power is raging domestically, which means — following the annexation of Crimea by Russia (2014) — that the borders are tampered with again.

Year2014CollaborationDolph Kessler, Michiel Driebergen, Kees van Ruyven, Ruud