World Stamps

By Denise McCarty

Israel and Germany salute diplomatic relations anniversary

June 23, 2015 11:35 AM

  • An Israel-Germany joint issue marks the 50th anniversary of diplomatic relations between the two countries. The design on the two stamps shows an example of Bauhaus architecture in Tel Aviv. The tab, or label, attached to the Israel stamp shows the logo of the anniversary.

By Denise McCarty

Israel and Germany commemorated 50 years of diplomatic relations May 7 by releasing joint-issue stamps.

The stamp from Israel is denominated 7.40 shekelim, and the stamp from Germany is €0.80.

In announcing the joint issue, Israel Post included a statement by Israeli ambassador to Germany Yakov Hadas-Handelsman: “Fifty years ago on May 12, 1965, as the agreement establishing German-Israeli diplomatic relations was signed, no one could have imagined that Israel and Germany would be the close allies they are today.

“Relations between Israel and Germany developed against the background of Nazi’s Germany’s role in the genocide of the Jewish people during the Holocaust. Two statesmen, David Ben-Gurion, one of the founders and first Prime Minister of Israel, and Konrad Adenauer, the first Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany, made it possible, against all odds, for the two countries to engage in direct exchange.

“The way was paved mainly by the civil societies on each side. They built the important bridges between people in both countries. ... ”

The stamps show Bruno House at 3 Strauss St. in Tel Aviv, built in 1935 by architect Wilhelm Zeev Heller in the Bauhaus school style. Also known as the international style, the Bauhaus school was founded in Weimar, Germany, in 1919. More than 4,000 structures in Tel Aviv were built in this style.

The Bauhaus center in Tel Aviv said of Bauhaus architecture, “This style is characterized by asymmetry, compositions of primary volumes — cubic and rounded, ribbon windows, pilots, thermometer windows, balconies, roof terraces and plays of shadow and light.”

Bundesdruckerei in Berlin printed the Germany stamp in panes of 10.

Cartor, a security printer in France, printed the Israel stamp in panes of 10 with five se-tenant labels, or tabs.

Each tab shows the logo marking the 50th anniversary. Ariel Wollek of Israel and Ticha Matting of Germany won the contest to create the logo design. The contest was organized by the two nation’s foreign ministries and the Bezalel Academy of Art and Design in Jerusalem.

In  addition, an Israeli-German panel selected Zvika Roitman’s designs for the postage stamps.

The two nations also participated in a joint issue in 2005 for the 40th anniversary of diplomatic relations. These stamps (Germany Scott 2359 and Israel 1619) show the two national flags and barbed wire.