Treading the fine line between fantasy and reality, Klinger produced his first series of etchings in Berlin while at the same time painting this snapshot of social decay in the growing city that can be sensed nearby. Behind the long brick wall there will be a building site or factory. In front of it, the landscape is already ruined: a bleak void with hard, geometric boundaries that are only softened by the curve of a fence. A young man out for a walk, seeing himself threatened by members of a gang, is trying to defend himself and has drawn his pistol. The rhythmically varied distances between the figures and their harsh shadows underline their isolation. The somewhat sensational portrayal of tension seems, if anything, ironic.