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THE Berliner Schloss post Publisher: Förderverein Berliner Schloss e. V.

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Berlin Palace prior to destruction. West façade facing Unter den Linden

April 2015

Berlin Palace in late November 2016. West façade facing Unter den Linden. Construction of the dome and historic façades begins

Palace and building shell: Eosander‘s dome façade


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Quicker than expected:

The historic façades are rising up rapidly Just compare the pictures here from the April issue with the new September photos! A miracle is happening: everything that you see here in Extrablatt in the new November 2016 pictures of newly built historic façades, of models and of finished decorative elements made of sandstone has been paid for by our donors! We are extremely grateful to you all for that! What happens now? First an explanation: Berlin Palace‘s façades consist of the portals and the arrière-corps, i.e. the front sections containing the palace windows. By April 2016, these arrière-corps will be completed up to the fascia on all external façades, with all the historic palace details included. Even the retrospective modifications to the ground-floor windows made by Soldier King Friedrich Wilhelm I are being reconstructed. This proves that the prophecies of doom, saying that important elements here would get left out due to lack of funds, are without any foundation. At the same time, construction starts this autumn on the five outer portals, which will already be finished by the end of 2017. Work on Portal II facing onto Schlossplatz and Portal III below the dome have The Berlin Palace – Humboldt Forum in December 2016. nearly been finished by now. The Schlüter Courtyard too is at an advanced stage of construction. reconstruction is going to be. And The courtyard is thus regaining its now, after the construction of the dome‘s shell, the substance of the historic slope as well. palace is already giving its old order These pictures give me great pleas- back to the heart of Berlin. The proure. They show even the last of any portions of the historic buildings doubters how beautiful the palace fit together correctly is becoming and how authentic its again and through the size of the

palace even the enormous cathedral‘s relationship with the historic centre is commensurate once more. Shortly before the end of our palace simulation in 1993/94, Marianne von Weizsäcker, the wife of the then German president, said to me:

„Everything here now looks so normal again, as if there had never been anything different here!“ And it is precisely this that you already notice today, only even more clearly than back then, because the impression made by the palace in its original beauty is much deeper still.

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Berlin Palace in 2019, showing the Schlossplatz faรงade and Neptune Fountain

April 2015

Berlin Palace in November 2016, showing the shell of the Schlossplatz faรงade

Palace and building shell: the Schlossplatz faรงade The return of the Neptune Fountain is not yet assured


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Berlin Palace prior to destruction; south faรงade and Neptune Fountain; Portal I; round corner tower and Church of St. Mary

April 2015

Berlin Palace in October 2016; south faรงade; building shell, showing Portal I, round corner tower and Church of St. Mary


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Reconstruction of the huge Eosander Portal and the dome

Following the addition of extensions to Berlin Palace by the Swede, Johann Eosander von Göthe, and its crowning with the dome built in around 1850 by Stüler and

Schadow to a design by Schinkel, the Palace‘s west façade facing Unter den Linden became the actual show side. The Portal was a solid block of stone, modelled on the tri-

umphal arch of Septimius Severus at the Forum Romanum in Rome, although significantly larger than its ancient archetype. Hidden behind it above the archways were

large cisterns for the Palace‘s water supply, as even then it already had running water in several parts of the building. That‘s why within the Portal there


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April 2015

Berlin Palace in October 2016, showing the shell of the westfaçade

were only two tiny windows, which were also hidden in the fascia above the columns – though now in the bare concrete shell clearly visible. This spring, work also

began on the basic shell of the historic dome, as you can see from the image on the right. It is possible that parts of the steel construction of the actual dome will already be

up in time for the topping-out ceremony, in which case the topping-out garland will be hoist aloft there. The bare concrete surface of the

Portal‘s basic structure will again soon be looking like it used to, with work already underway in many areas!

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Berlin Palace in 2019, showing Schlüter Courtyard and cathedral dome

April 2015

Berlin Palace in December 2016; building shell, showing Schlüter Courtyard and cathedral dome


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Berlin Palace from Unter den Linden in 2019

April 2015

Berlin Palace from Unter den Linden in October 2016 – the building shell


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Convincing images You‘ve seen it on the previous pages and again here: even the bare shell of the Palace shows in minute detail the contours of the historic building destroyed by Walter Ulbricht. Its demolition in 1950 to make way for a banal parade ground for demonstrations of obeisance to the new regime in the recently founded GDR was an act of cultural barbarism. In a few months, you will start to see the historic palace walls clearly rising up on every side and ultimately no historic element of the outer Baroque façades or in the Schlüter Courtyard will be missing. The preparations at the duly commissioned natural stone works in Germany are running at full steam: the outer façades of the window runs up to the first floor, complete with the famous bucrania, are largely finished and ready for installation. In fact, work on installing the façades in several areas began in April. Thanks to your wonderful help, we have been able to pay all outgoings for the authentic reconstruction of the historic façades using donated funds. But we are still far from

Berlin Palace in 2019. Lustgarten façade

Berlin Palace in 2019. Schlossplatz façade

Berlin Palace in 2019, showing the west façade facing Schlossfreiheit

reaching our fundraising goal, which has now been raised from 80 to 105 million euros as a result of it becoming possible to build the palace dome and the three inner portals of the former Great Palace Courtyard true to their original form. We are now still 39 million euros short. This sum needs to be raised by the end of 2019. Don‘t believe it can be done? Read more abot it on pages 70, 71, 72.

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N e w s f r o m t h e H u m b o l d t F o ru m

N e w s f r o m t h e H u m b o l d t F o ru m

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Start-up scene A leap through time from portal to portal: introducing the Humboldt Forum‘s artistic direction committee by Stefan Müchler

The Humboldt Forum in the new Berlin Palace is not only Germany‘s most important cultural project, it is also structurally immense. Where could offer a better overview for the new foundational artistic direction committee than the balcony of the former GDR National Council building opposite the building site, which today houses the European School of Management and Technology. Together they climbed up Honecker‘s old stairs: Minister of State for Culture Monika Grütters and her artistic direction triumvirate: Neil MacGregor, (outgoing) director of the British Museum and soon head of the committee, art historian Horst Bredekamp from the Humboldt University and Hermann Parzinger, president of the Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation. From portal to portal: from the largest preserved piece of the old palace, they look across at the future entrance of the Humboldt Forum below the dome.


SPK/Götz Schleser

The Minister of State had already led them through the mighty Portal III, the foyer, the cuboid space that will take the houses of the South Seas, and the Central Asia wing on the third floor, leaving Neil MacGregor amazed: „The shell of the Humboldt Forum is truly spectacular! I had not expected such a great link with the city. I was also particularly impressed, however, by the special exhibition areas and the multi-function space with its fantastic outlook. Berlin is a cosmopolitan world city and the opportunity to present the collections in a new way and to do research with curators from all over the world - such an opportunity doesn‘t exist anywhere else.“

May 5, 2015 will go down in the annals of the Humboldt Forum: the foundational artistic direction committee of Neil MacGregor, Hermann Parzinger and Horst Bredekamp Minister of State Monika Grütters in front of their new workplace

The artistic direction committee members know what lies ahead of them: „We now have to plan content for the ground floor with its special exhibition areas, the theatre, the multi-functional hall and the repertory cinema and link it with the open areas on the museum floors,“ says Hermann Parzinger. „It will also be important to work closely with the State of Berlin so that the Humboldt Forum really does become a single entity.“ The committee also needs, not least, to develop a structure for how the building will operate. Horst Bredekamp wants above all to use curiosity: „I hope for a great deal of visitor participation and that exhibitions formats will be developed that are different to what‘s expected.“

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The wall structure of the historic façades The reconstruction of the historic façades is following the example of Andreas Schlüter. He too built a brick wall, about 80cm thick, in front of the Renaissance palace of Elector Joachim II, as the core building behind it was to remain habitable. Into this brick wall he set sandstone as the Baroque façade. We are proceeding in exactly this way today: in front of the concrete core we are now placing a thick brick wall, into which the sandstone elements will be set at a greater or lesser depth depending on their size and weight. There are often prophecies of doom in the media suggesting that many parts of the historic façades could be left off due to a lack of money if the fundraising does not achieve the desired success. Let us be quite clear about this: there is going to be no Berlin Palace of inferior quality! For structural reasons alone, that is a total non-starter! With its reconstructed façades, the Palace will again look as beautiful as it did in the past! Tenders have therefore beewn invited for almost all historic façades and contracts already awarded, including all cornices, reliefs, window reveals and hood moulds, with columns and pilasters, capitals, eagles and cherubs, all true to their original size and beauty. The work is being constantly monitored by Baroque experts, who are keeping an extremely precise check on its accuracy. Due to the structural calculations for the integration of the sandstone into the walled façades, the experts in Baroque art and architecture are joined by construction and masonry experts as well. By the end of 2018, the façades will already be largely finished. However, that represents the greatest challenge for us in relation to our fundraising efforts: from now until then, we need to collect a further €15 million each year to ensure that there is no shortfall. Please join in the fundraising! Take a look at the pictures of the construction of the sample façade on the right and see how intensively interlocked the wall structure of the historic sandstone façade is with the abundant brick masonry. That is exactly how Andreas Schlüter did it over 300 years ago!


Make-up of the historic palace façade






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Exemplary façade In spring 2012, the sample façade, a first component of the new Berlin Palace, was completed in full-scale authentic format. Its surface area corresponds to just one half of one per cent of the palace’s three Baroque outer façades, which are now due to be reconstructed. The palace was that huge! The upper half of the Schlüter window bay, consisting of parade floor window, mezzanine, cornice and balustrade has been fully reconstructed, including all decorative elements, such as the eagle, the initialled cartouche, the ram’s heads and the laurel garlands. For structural and for cost reasons it was decided not to reconstruct the bottom half, which for test sampling was also not necessary. The façade is in the truest sense of the world exemplary.

The whole wall structure matches that of the later palace. In front of the concrete skin on the inside is the insulation layer. This is then followed by a brick wall, c. 80cm thick, into which the sandstone façade elements have been embedded. Also inside the brick wall is a thick, zincplated pipe, the palace roof’s internal drain. The sandstone elements were fixed in place in accordance with the old tradition. The only change being that casting lead was no longer used, replaced instead by corresponding anchors made of non-rusting stainless steel. Sandstone of several different provenances was built into the sample section, in order to

also test which sorts were truly the optimum choice, not only in relation to appearance, but also in terms of resistance to weathering. The palace’s future colouring is also being tested on this section. The next time you visit the Humboldt Box you should definitely take a look at the façade. It is situated directly opposite the cathedral next to the River Spree.

Thorough and careful preparations for selecting the palace façade stones:

A journey to the quarries of Saxony and Silesia

There is scarcely any aspect that is of greater importance to the reconstruction of the palace façades than the selection of the right sandstone for the different façade elements. Depending on how the stone is going to be worked and what it will have to withstand, three quality grades are required: a soft stone for the finely sculpted pieces, a harder stone for the simpler sculptures and a tough stone for the cornices and all parts of the façades directly exposed to the elements, as this withstands such environmental influences the best. The burden placed on the stones over the decades is enormous. They store lots of moisture and are subjected to great fluctuations in temperature, plus direct sunlight, frost, snow and rain. The dew point in the stone therefore plays a major role. In the 18th century, Andreas Schlüter travelled personally to Saxony into the Elbe Sandstone Mountains near Pirna to the south of Dresden. In logistical terms these were the closest to Berlin Palace. He is said to have even had his own quarry there. In those days transportation presented the biggest problem. After all, unlike today there was no well-developed road or rail network for bringing the incredibly heavy blocks of stone to Berlin to be worked on. Even transporting the stone from the quarry to

the loading point on the side of the Sandstone Mountains were thus the Elbe presented a huge problem that only range from which the building could only be overcome with a mas- materials could be extracted at a cost sive effort from man and beast. The that was even halfway predictable. only option for onward transporta- The soft sculptor’s stone was accordtion to Berlin was the Elbe, the Havel ingly Cotta stone, the medium-hard and finally the Spree. The stones were grade Reinhardsdorf stone and the shipped down river along the Elbe hard grade Posta stone, named in each and then towed up river against the case after the location of the seam current along the Havel and the within the mountain range. As the Spree, i.e. the barges were pulled by quarries were increasingly exhausted teams of horses on the riverbank all they migrated away from their origithe way to the palace building site. This extremely tough work was immensely timeconsuming and expensive. While today the material costs compared to the wages of the stonemasons and sculptors are at a ratio of 1: 10, the stone alone was therefore often more expensive than the piecerate wages paid for it to be worked on and sculpted into shape. The Elbe A quarry in Silesia…

nal location – and thus the quality of the stone also often changed. But they took what they could get, without thinking about durability, i.e. without worrying about how long the pieces of work would last, there being, after all, no other option. And thus after not even a hundred years since its expansion by Schlüter and Eosander the palace fell into disrepair, because much of the stone failed to withstand the con-

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A block being sliced up using a frame saw.

Salvaging the blocks of stone using heavy equipment.

stant changes between rain, frost, heat and arid air. Ultimately at the start of the 19th century under Friedrich Wilhelm III the palace had to be refurbished over many areas of it façades. All of the parapet statues were taken down due to their weathered state. Some have been preserved to this day in the depositories and provide wonderful testimony to the high level of the 18th century sculptors’ creative skills – and to the dramatic decay of the stone caused by environmental influence, as even then due to the thousands of chimneys in

stone for the reconstruction of the In August the results were dispalace façade? cussed at the foundation in a first In May, a party of key personnel meeting of the Expert Reconstructherefore travelled to Saxony and tion Committee established for Silesia to view local projects and to this purpose – the process has behold discussions with the local ex- gun and will carry on further. perts. The party included Manfred However, the sculptors to be comRettig, the Berlin Palace - Hum- missioned will also have a say on boldt Forum Foundation’s execu- ‘their’ stone and their judgement tive board spokesman, Berthold incorporated case by case. Just, Director of the Palace Con- This, after all, is also part of the struction Workshop in Spandau, centuries old tradition of their geologist Dr. Angela Ehling from trade. It is ultimately they who crethe Federal Institute for Geoscienc- ate from a raw block a sublime es and Natural Resources and work of art! Wilhelm von Boddien, whose Friends of Berlin Palace association is responsible via its fundraising efforts for the financing of the palace façades. The result was encouraging: there are sufficient deposits of high quality stone to satisfy both the sculptors’ current demands and the needs of sustainability in order, taking advantage of market competition, to buy the required quantities of the three main grades at reasonable prices. This had to be clarified before building activity started and tender documents began to … and one in Saxony. be developed.

built-up areas they already had acid rain, it was just that nobody was aware of it. In the 19th century, as a result of Berlin’s canal link to the Oder, builders in Berlin increasingly used Silesian sandstone, which was more durable. Today we are able to order the required sandstone from all sorts of different quarries, matching in exemplary fashion to the respective façade part and the demands placed upon it. Due to its better durability the sandstone for the restoration of Cologne Cathedral, for instance, no longer comes from the Siebengebirge Mountains just a few kilometres to the south, but in part even from quarries in the section of the Elbe Sandstone Mountains located inside the Czech Republic, Manfred Rettig, Berthold Just and Dr. Angela Ehling at a because expert stonemason’s yard. crystallographic reports prove that the stone from there is likely to last longer. What then could have made more sense than, accompanied by academic experts, to visit a number of important quarries in order establish the bases for procuring Görlitz, the pearl of Lusatia, border town between thousands of Saxony and Silesia. tons of sand-


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Passion, searching, learning, weighing up, combining, knowledge, research and sobriety

Daring to rebuild Berlin Palace by Wilhelm von Boddien

The crest of Inner Portal II in the Great Palace Courtyard on the south side

Sculptor Frank Kösler, Berlin

Public reaction was full of incredulity and astonishment. For years, newspapers used to write about our endeavours to reconstruct Berlin Palace in its original form as if they were writing about some prohibited, arrogant act that needed to be stopped. We were the palace spooks, the gang of palace counterfeiters. The new palace was called a Disneyland, a fake, a phantom from a forbidden dream. We were simply unseemly, reactionary and revisionist and several journalists also just ridiculed us. None of the palace opponents had any idea of what a great help they were being to us all. They made us up our game. We acquired ever more in-depth knowledge and in the execution of our plans left nothing more to chance. To do this, we didn‘t have to reinvent the wheel. Miniature of the crest of Inner Portal II

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Putto from the north cartouche beside Portal III: sculptor Jens Cacha uses a stippler device to transfer the model‘s dimensions to the stone and chisels the spot free.

Rather, we were able to orient ourselves on famous examples. There are countless reputable and successful reconstructions of famous buildings. Reims Cathedral, for example, and Ypres Cloth Hall were both either badly or completely destroyed

in World War I. Warsaw Old Town and Palace, St. Michael‘s Monastery in Kiev, the Abbey of Monte Cassino and the Royal Palace and, above all, the Frauenkirche in Dresden were all razed to the ground in the Second World War.

Sculptor Johann Gewers works up a detail of clothing from a large block

All historic stone buildings have, though, in fact long since been reconstructed, even if they were never destroyed. The creeping process of destruction through snow and ice, storms and acid rain, heat and cold takes its toll on the stone, which

weathers away. Restoration work is constantly going on to safeguard buildings from falling into disrepair. We would have no knowledge of the beauty of old cathedrals if

The upper genius: finished stone and plaster model

Continued on page 26


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Time signals: production of the large eagles in the fascia has now also begun, so that they can shortly be built into the façade.

Continued from page 25

they had not been repeatedly restored. Over the centuries, they would simply have crumbled away. Imagine Cologne Cathedral without its site maintenance team pottering about on it somewhere. Do you know of any post-war series of photos of this monument, taken from all sides on any given day where you do not see scaffolding on at least one picture?

Drawing on all these examples, and many more, we honed our understanding, intensified our knowledge, learned and at the same time began to utilise the latest technologies, which considerably simplified our work. The computer, with all its programming possibilities, helped to make pictures true to size, since the Palace‘s building plans have been missing for almost 300 years. Berlin Palace had left its legacy in all

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... and its recovery and transport away from a Berlin garden. We are still looking for such finds and are glad to receive any information about such pieces!

Also found in the garden: an eagle of the chain of the Order of the Black Eagle from the crest.

The finished 1:1 model, this time of the crest of Inner Portal IV in the Great Palace Courtyard on the north side

sorts of different archives, often discovered only by chance: an enormous jigsaw puzzle of restoration plans using inches and other meas-

urements, usually imprecise and in need of interpretation. Dozens of photographs taken by Meydenbauer and sketches (land registry meas-

urements) from the Kaiser‘s time with her Leica took of the ruins were waiting to be interpreted. Add- from scaffold and fire escapes, as the ed to those were the wonderful de- demolition of 1950 had already betailed photos that Eva Kemmlein Continued on page 28

The crest of Portal IV on the north side, destroyed by artillery fire, and its resurrection in Franco Stella‘s Palace Forum

Sculptor Frank Kösler, Berlin

Finds are an added help: here the original crown from Portal II ...


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Pictured above: the Prussian eagle in the cartouche above Portal V...

Sculptor Kai Röttger, Berlin

...the lost original...

… being precisely modelled in sculptor‘s clay Continued from page 27

Sven Schubert, Dresden-Hellerau/Wilschdorf

cal University. Led by Prof. Dr. Algun. The Ernst von Siemens Arts bertz, it developed a photogrammeFoundation donated money that in try programme that enabled what 1999 was passed on to Berlin Techni- would otherwise have been impos-

The stone prototype for more than a dozen of the ionic capitals of the tall columns on the first-floor level of the Schlüter portals

sible: an exact reconstruction of the palace façades to a degree of at least 99%. At the Friends of Berlin Palace, our central partner became Stuhlemmer Architects of Berlin. They searched and searched with detective-like fervour and repeatedly found new, conclusive archive evidence, which perfectly filled in the gaps in the jigsaw, until in 2006 the archaeologically accurate building plans were then drawn. As with the shredded Stasi documents, the mountain of material was arranged by the Stuhlemmer team like a puzzle into an overall structure, which, fed with all sorts of different information and measurements, produced a cohesive set of core data and ultimately the building plans. These became the basis developed under commission from the Friends of Berlin Palace for the historic façades that are now being created. At the same time, we were looking for and found highly trained sculptors, who were familiar with the Prussian Baroque style, for which they developed a particular sensitivity – and had a very challenging task. In order to interpret Schlüter‘s team of sculptors from around 1700, they had to sacrifice a part of their own personalities and thus skills of interpretation - anything that was at odds with reconstruction true to the original. In Matthias Körner, Eckard Böhm, Stefan Werner-Schmelter, Steffen

Werner, Peik Wünsche, Andreas Hoferick, Frank Kösler, Carlo Wloch, Bernhard Lankers and later many others, we found gifted artists, almost all originating from the famous sculpting workshop of Jürgen Klimes in Berlin, who as their teacher under the difficult conditions of artistic work in the GDR had created a phenomenal nucleus, without any idea of how beneficial this would one day be for our work. However, Jürgen Klimes loved Prussian Baroque, which he revitalised at the Zeughaus, the cathedrals on Gendarmenmarkt and other famous buildings. It was also he and his workers who in 1963 integrated into the National Council building the so-called Liebknecht Portal, i.e. Portal IV of Berlin Palace, even then largely reconstructed based on the rescued portal‘s ruined original stones. One worry, however, did cause us many a sleepless night: for reasons of cost the construction time for the palace would be very short – and an unimaginable amount of sandstone has to be built into its façades, over 10,000 tonnes in fact, which has to be worked by hand. Would we ever find enough sculptors to do this? We found them, albeit including in a different form, as you will discover on the pages of this journal.


Sculptor Frank Kösler, Berlin

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All four figures have been lost. Using the maquettes (small models) of these, the sculptors get close to the condition of 1859.

Poor restorations distorted the overall impression

Portal V in the Schlüter Courtyard around 1859 with the historic Victoria (2nd from left)

Portal V in the Schlüter Courtyard around 1910 with the Victoria now in the Wilhelmine style (second from left)

Old photos show the palace‘s original beauty In the archives and also on the photographic market in second-hand bookshops we are constantly finding rare photographs from the early days of photography that we have not seen before. They enable us to optimise our planning documents and to get ever closer to the original condition of the façades and their sculptures. What you see here are two sculptures in the Schlüter Courtyard from the 18th century, which by the early 20th century were so badly weathered away that they were completely remade in the neo-Ba-

roque style. The replacements were much less graceful, more static, less elegant and less full of verve than the originals that had been lost. Standing between the sculptures that remained preserved, they looked like imposters. These early photographs from the year 1859 are some that we found only a short time ago. Naturally, we shall now recreate the sculptures of Portal V in the Schlüter Courtyard, which were completely destroyed, in their original condition in order to assemble a coherent, wholly harmonious reproduction of the courtyard.

The same was the case with the ‚pax‘ (the allegory to peace), on the right above the main portal. On the left the original in around 1859, full of movement. On the right the new sculpture in buxom Wilhelmine style from the 20th century.



The plaster positive of the eagle cartouche after making a mould of the clay model. In doing so, the original work of art was destroyed, as the clay cracks, crumbles and loses volume during the drying process.

Working group of Klein, Röttger and Lukoscheck

Portal V in the Schlüter Courtyard. At the top the eagle cartouche and on the right and left, above the four sculptures, the tondi, featuring the likenesses of Roman kings.

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Originals of two kings have been recovered. The frame was lost in the demolition. Here the reproduction in sculptor‘s clay. On the right the negative mould made of plaster and silicon.

Façades being created in old sculpting tradition mould release agent, generally shellac, was next brushed onto the model, from which a mould was then directly cast using plaster. Today, it

is done differently: the clay model is coated in high-quality, liquid silicon. Once it has dried, this is like a per-

fectly fitting rubber skin and is very flexible. Before it is taken off, a plaster corset is therefore built against the silicon skin. This keeps the

Sculptor Frank Kösler, Berlin

As they were three hundred years ago, the palace façades are being created to old rules: first, every detail is modelled in clay. In the past, a

Models of eagles from the Schlüter façades‘ mezzanine. 40 different eagles were modelled in clay and then coated in silicon for casting the moulds.

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This large shot of Portal V in the Schlüter Courtyard shows the whole beauty of Schlüter‘s architecture. He was sculptor and architect in one and therefore not unreasonably called the ‚German Michelangelo‘.

mould stable after removal. It is has changed over time as a result of del, plaster model and sandstone only then that the conversion into technical progress and better mate- execution has remained. sandstone occurs. The path taken rials, but the historic trio of clay mo-


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Berlin Palace before World War II North façade of Berlin Palace, facing the Lustgarten. No resolution has yet been taken on reconstructing the historic Lustgarten terrace from the middle of the 19th century and even less so on any return of the Horse Tamers or the Princes of Orange (see page 50 ff.), which still stand in Kleistpark. This picture vividly shows how the terrace acts as a link between the Lustgarten complex and the beauty of the Schlüter and Eosander façades, giving the Palace a worthy setting. This status must be restored in 2019!



The 1:1 model...

Sculptor Andreas Hoferick, Berlin

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Eosander‘s great cartouche at the transition with the risalit of the Lustgarten façade is an allegory to the king‘s fame. Two divine fama (heralds of fame) announce with their fanfares the placement on the Palace of the cartouche with the king‘s initials. In symbolic terms the Palace thus became the house of the gods and the monarch divine. Its reconstruction (here the model from 2014) will be fitted by the end of 2017.

Eosander‘s great cartouche on the Lustgarten façade

Totally destroyed and yet authentically regained!

Trial assembly of the finished sandstone elements of the cartouche

Sven Schubert, Dresden-Hellerau/Wilschdorf

To date we have had the not always justifiable hope that reconstructing the palace façades in sandstone would fit in as well into the timetable for the construction of the Humboldt Forum. We had numerous applications from qualified sculptors and companies working in natural stone. But all plans to date came down to not terribly productive manual labour. After all, in a sandstone block weighing 16 tonnes there is frequently only 9 tonnes of sculpture. 7 tonnes needed until now to be stripped away by hand in order to expose the likeness. This was preceded by intensive detective work on reconstructing the design of individual elements, as there was nothing to go on apart from some excellent, but also some very blurred photos and a few plans of the restoration jobs, largely with imprecise measurements.

... and its execution in stone in June 2015


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Elector Friedrich III needed the elevation to king not least due to his ambition to be a great sovereign in the heart of Europe. It was, after, the era of feudal absolutism. Louis XIV, the Sun King in France, was building himself the grand Palace of Versailles. ‚L’état, c’est moi!‘ (The state is me!) was his slogan. Friedrich III, Elector of Brandenburg, ruled the poorest province, the ‚sandbox‘ of the Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation. The Empire was ruled over by the Kaiser in Vienna. Directly below him, but of the highest standing, the electors led their provinces very independently. They were not kings and were also not allowed to be such. This elevation in rank came only after the end of the Empire, following the Napoleonic conquest. Through succession, Brandenburg came into possession of large parts of East Prussia. This territory lay outside of the Holy Empire. In a crown concordat with the Kaiser, Friedrich III agreed his elevation in rank: he was allowed pursuant to

this to crown himself in Königsberg as Friedrich I, King in Prussia, not of Prussia. In order to be able to showcase this in appropriate style, he had the two magnificent palaces of Berlin and Charlottenburg built, as winter and summer residences. The young kingdom turned to ancient divine traditions. Out of this closeness to God grew divine right. The palace façades were therefore richly adorned with divine cherubic groups, which carried a crest with the King‘s initials and thus lent him godly status. Symbols of ancient sacrificial animals, oxskulls (bucrania) and rams‘ heads decorated the windows of the royal chambers and halls. They symbolised divine sacrifice at the Palace in order to dispose the gods to be merciful towards the young kingdom. Statues as allegories to numerous gods and demigods and the virtues on the portal pedestals added to the programme.

Schlüters great art grew here into The fama on the right in the Eosander cartouche in a 1:3 model exultant proportions!

Sven Schubert, Dresden-Hellerau/Wilschdorf

April 2015

Sculptor Andreas Hoferick, Berlin

Classical antiquity determined the iconography of Berlin Palace.


All others: Sven Schubert, Dresden-Hellerau/Wilschdorf

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The cherubs of the great Eosander cartouche are now also being transferred from the plaster mould (rear) into sandstone (front).

The divine head about the King‘s sweeping initials ‚FI‘ is transferred into the stone using the classic stipple method via a minutely adjustable system of rods.

This photograph shows the position of the cherub being worked on above in the great cartouche facing the Lustgarten. You can easily see the stone cuts, which determine the dimensions for the individual natural stones.

Sculptor Andreas Hoferick, Berlin

The cartouche‘s left fama on topping-out day


Bamberger Natursteinwerk Hermann Graser

The bucranium windows described in the last Extrablatt have already been installed on the first floor and the ones for the second floor, the Parade Floor, are made and ready to fit! The photograph shows the mighty dimensions of this window, which nevertheless fits harmoniously into the palace faรงades due to their huge expanse.

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The Parade Floor in the palace ruins

Panel with the Elector‘s initials prior to being fitted into the window. At the natural stone workshops of Hermann Graser in Bamberg.

Schlüter‘s bucranium window on the first floor of the Palace

In September 2015, bucranium windows were fitted into the façades in every area.

Its diversity of form contains the entire great art of the Baroque era. Finely modelled jambs integrate the ox‘s skull into the hood moulds, adorned with laurel festoons. The detailed photographs of the bucranium give an idea of the variety of the 40 windows: Schlüter created a very powerful expression, which Eosander softened and to which Böhme ultimately gave a more playfully elegant look. Knowledgeable experts advised against any reconstruction. They said that the artistic craft required for it no longer existed today. We nevertheless ventured a try – and the result is convincing. We made several different prototypes of the window in order to do justice to the great variety. As a result, the palace façades are getting the same vibrant, intensive appearance as in the past!


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Laurel festoon: as if hidden under hoar frost – the robot‘s preliminary milling stage

Laurel festoon: the sculptor‘s individualised precision work

The art of sculpture is the metamorphosis from dead material to great spirit by Wilhelm von Boddien wonderful work of art. A moment later, the fairly robust lady guiding us around the museum brusquely instructed us to drag ourselves away from the youth and look out

of the window at the mountain on which Delphi lies, Mount Parnassus. The mountain looked just as barren as many another in Greece. It was covered in holly, gorse,

thorny bushes and sun-scorched grass. „On the inside, this mountain is made of white marble,“ we heard her say. „Lying dormant inside it

Photos: Hermann Graser Natural Stone Works, Bamberg

In Delphi museum in Greece there is an enchanting statue of Antonius, the most beautiful youth of classical antiquity. Friends and I stood speechless and in awe before this

Sculptural love for detail, as 300 years ago

Bucrania in different versions, ready for installation!


Hermann Graser Natural Stone Works, Bamberg

our thousands of such youths just as beautiful as this Antonius. But for now, the gods have given just one man the power and skill to liberate one of these youths from the mountain – and now he stands in all his beauty before you!“ I have never again heard any comparably moving definition of the art of sculpture, such a wonderful description of the metamorphosis of the dead, stone, cold, white material into an animated, great spirit! I recalled this over and again as I visited quarries in Saxony and Silesia, where they are now breaking up huge, heavy stones, from which the palace façades are being created. We give you an impression of this with the picture on page 41. In the days of Andreas Schlüter over 300 years ago, the sculpting team‘s journeymen laboriously chiselled out the rough contours of the sculpture by hand. As it was then, this remains today the most time-consuming stage on the stone‘s way to becoming a work of art, and later you see nothing of it. It is only through the enormously increased productivity of computer-controlled saws, robots, deburring metal brushes and other technical aids extending all the way to pneumatic chisels that it is possible to remove the large quantities of stone, which used to hide the work of art and that now through this processing crumble away as dust and waste. Then comes the stone sculptor and gives the blank its individual touch, which then makes it into a great work of art that we will enjoy seeing later on the palace façades.

Hermann Graser Natural Stone Works, Bamberg

Pneumatically assisted precision two-handed work by the sculptor

Applying fluting to the stone is still a completely manual job.

Hofman Natural Stone, Werbach-Gamburg

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Sculptor Christian Ortlepp, Berlin


Large fascia relief high above the left portal passage. Here a reconstructed detail, modelled in clay.

Why are we going to so much trouble? Can‘t it all be done more cheaply? Even with the many pictures on these and previous pages we were able to show you only a small cross-section of the fantastic efforts being made to research, plan, model and ultimately reconstruct the huge Palace as it historically looked, true to the original detail. In the same way as the sample

façade opposite the cathedral pictured on page 40 shows only 0.5 percent of the surface area of just three external façades, we are working on a much bigger, huge amount of material. In this way we are able to rehabilitate the centre of Berlin, once so famous from a history of art perspective, in an authentic and re-

Original photograph of the destroyed relief...

sponsible way. Wonderful buildings designed by great architects of Berlin‘s past stand in the area surrounding the Palace and form with their unique architecture an ensemble of global standing. The architectural quality of the Zeughaus (the former armoury), built at the same time as the Palace, set a benchmark for us.

Merely in order do the Palace justice, to give it back its original dignity, we have to reproduce its precious façades in perfect detail. We need to have a feel for the individual manner of expression of the stone sculptors and stonemasons of 300 years ago, led by Andreas Schlüter. A cheap copy of the old Palace would make the destruction of this precious ensemble by the War and political post-war despotism permanently visible and sealed for eternity.

...and its exemplary copy, authentic in every detail

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Sculptor Matthias Körner, Berlin

Let’s not deceive ourselves:

Reconstructed from nothing: recreation of the southern cartouche with the cherubs and the initials of King Friedrich I. (Plaster positive of the 1:1 model)

Berlin Palace was a unique work of art, a complete sculpture, conceived and created by Andreas Schlüter, probably the most important architect and sculptor of the early 18th century in Germany. He took his inspiration from Italian Michelangelo Buonarrotti, whose St. Peter‘s Basilica in Rome still excites and fascinates visitors with its holistic composition and overwhelms the observer with its beauty. As you have seen on the last few pages, all of our knowledge of Andreas Schlüter, his Palace and its wonderful details is contained as the result of extensive research work and the implementation thereof by gifted, meticulously working sculptors in the full-scale clay models. The models destroy themselves through the drying of the clay, which shrinks and cracks. For that reason, even in the past, replicas were always made in plaster, in order to keep them stable in shape for the stone copy. For the current reconstruction of the Palace based on its historic previous appearance, these have been created out of nothing, based solely on old photographs and calculated dimensions, as the originals had been completely destroyed through the building‘s demolition.

The Eosander Portal prior to destruction, showing the southern cartouche. Damaged by artillery fire, every last remnant was blown away after the War.


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The solution to the puzzle:

They are the milling marks of a robot!

The sculptor with the greatest speed, precision and stamina! In the process of making the palace façades and their sculptural decoration, the work of art is ‚liberated‘ from the stone. When the sculpture is finished, all that remains of a 10-tonne block of stone is often just 5 tonnes, with the rest of the material cut away. It would actually be unproductive to use the human labour of a sculptor for this, as what has been cut away is, of course, no longer seen. This work is now taken on by computer-controlled robots. A 3-dimensional scan is made of the 1:1 model, artistically a perfect copy of the original and approved as authentic by a committee of experts. This scan gets interpreted by the computer programme, which then controls the robot, with millimetre precision in line with the template. The robot removes around 97% of all superfluous stone. It does not

strike the stone, but rather cuts out the figure using special milling tools cooled by a permanent gush of water. In its work the robot uses a variety of tools, which, also computer-controlled, it avails itself of automatically. Theoretically it could be in operation around the clock. The milling method is kinder on the stone than chiselling, as it completely rules out the risk of any hairline fractures in the stone caused by a chisel‘s impact. This significantly prolongs the stone’s useful life. The sculptor now ‚removes‘ barely another 3% of the material – and gives the piece the key artistic touch. This rationalisation increases a sculptor‘s capacity by a factor of thirty. All worries about having adequate capacity can thus be forgot- How a cornice profile is made. A saw controlled by a laser beam saws fins ten. The number of qualified sculp- into the stone. These then get broken off and the profile is further worked tors available is sufficient! on by hand.

Photos: Hermann Graser Natural Stone Works, Bamberg

The architectural drawing of the bucranium window with the joints for the later stone carving.

The bucranium window, scanned into the computer in 3D.

The robot milling the hood of the bucranium window.


Hofman Naturstein, Werbach-Gamburg

Sven Schubert, Dresden-Hellerau/Wilschdorf

Hofman Naturstein, Werbach-Gamburg

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Milling a Corinthian capital

The pre-made body of a capital, ready to be worked on further

Sven Schubert, Dresden-Hellerau/Wilschdorf

Milling another window hood

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However: The most important and artistically best sculptors are still the human ones!

Expert training, many years of ex- strength and stamina, the professiperience, a passion for Prussian Ba- on is becoming increasingly open roque and an in-depth knowledge to women as well. of it: that‘s what makes our palace sculptors special! Computers make the work easier, because they free the artwork from the stone in the correct dimensions in a much shorter time than a human ever could. However, they know nothing of Baroque art and have no sense of proportion. Human sculptors thus remain indispensable. Using modern, precisely controllable pneumatic tools they further work the stone and give it an individual, artistic beauty, extremely close to the lost original. In the past, one hand guided the chisel, the other the wooden mallet. Now the sculptor is able to guide the pneumatic chisel with both hands, to regulate the impact electronically and thus shape even more details of the work of art with the necessary time and care. As less demand is now put on physical

Photos: Hofman Natural Stone, Werbach-Gamburg. Below right: Hermann Graser Natural Stone Works, Bamberg


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The Schloss, situated on the Spreeinsel [River Spree Island] represented Berlin as a whole.

»The Schloss did not lie in Berlin – Berlin was the Schloss« (Statement by Wolf Jobst Siedler)

Berlin city center, 1937, photographed from the Siegessäule [Victory Column] on the Grosse Stern [Great Star Circle]. The Schloss dominates the center of the city. It stretches from the left side of the picture to the right below the tower of the Rathaus [Town Hall], with its southwest corner in the center and onward with the Apothekenflügel [Pharmacy Wing] almost to the Berliner Dom [Berlin Cathedral]. As the Schloss was ten meters higher than the buildings surrounding it, it towered above the houses on Unter den Linden [Under the Lime-Trees].

Everywhere in Europe, capital cities existed before their palaces. All large tect in northern Germany. There it stands, with a fascinating power and cities in Europe can well be imagined without their palaces. monumentality, an example of the unique North German Baroque, worthy In Rome, for example, one cannot decide which of the many piazzas should to stand alongside Michelangelo’s St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome and the be considered its city center. Paris had already been in existence for more Louvre in Paris. The Schloss dominated the center of Berlin, the square than 1500 years before the that was created for it, Bourbons built the Palais and the streets that led to des Tuileries and the Louvre. it. It is the very essence of The city is identified with Berlin for those who much more than the central would like to see Berlin’s palace and its surroundings. past recreated”. In 2000 year old London, the Johannes Stroux, President of the Academy of present day governmental Science in Berlin, expandquarter and Buckingham Palace arose about 150 years ed: „A powerful seriousago. It was in the 19th cenness is expressed by the tury that the monarchy city side of the Schloss, transferred its ancient seat while a relaxed solemnity from the Tower of London to Berlin’s old city center: Schloss, Berliner Dom [Berlin Cathedral], Museumsinsel [Museum’s and open gracefulness Island], and the Zeughaus [Arsenal] as symbols of state authority, religion, culture, and valor are reign over the garden side. this area. The Schloss, founded in grouped around the Lustgarten [Pleasure Garden] (left). View of the Schlossfreiheit [Palace’s After Eosander’s expansion, the Schloss’s front 1443, is almost as old as the Free Traders’ Street] (right). was turned toward the city itself. It was the starting west from its previous popoint for the real developIn 1950, Richard Hamann, the Professor of the Art History Institute of ment of this urban area. At sition toward the south. Berlin’s Humboldt University, emphasized fighting the demolition of the that time the twin cities of Now, together with the Berliner Schloss: Berlin and Cölln had just former Zeughaus [Arse6000 inhabitants - a small, nal] and the Oper Unter ”Berlin is poor in monuments of the past, but it has a work village-like town in the den Linden [Opera under midst of the impoverished the Lime-Trees], the that is worthy to rank with the greatest ones of the past. Mark of Brandenburg. Schloss constituted a This work is mentioned and depicted in books on art history „Andreas Schlüter, the monumental city core, Schloss’s creator, was the that only a few other citall over the world: The Berliner Schloss.“ ies had. greatest sculptor and archi-

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The façade of Schloss’s westside, designed by the architect Johann Eosander von Göthe, with the Triumphbogen [Triumphal Arch] modeled after the Arch of Septimius Severus in Rome. The dome was built in 1851 by Friedrich August Stüler based on a design by Karl Friedrich Schinkel, the famous Prussian architect.

”If the Berliner Schloss is destroyed, we will lose one of the most creative architectural works of art that the world can still call its own, today, after so much has been lost. From the time around the turn of the 17th to 18th century, there are few buildings in Europe that can surpass this edifice in its power and its façade treatments with their vivid sculptural clarity.“ Statement made by Prof. Dr. Ernst Gall, DirectorGeneral of the Prussian and Bavarian Palace Authorities, in 1950.

The front, facing the garden, from the northeast, with Eosander’s Portal [Gate] IV

The Courtyard, designed by Andreas Schlüter, North Gate I.

The Schlosshof [Courtyard], designed by Andreas Schlüter, North Gate V. The front, facing the city, from the southeast, with the majestic Portalen [Gates] I and II

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Why Berlin Palace needs to be rebuilt for the sake of the urban fabric in the city centre by Prof. Dr. Manfred Klinkott Following lengthy debate, the decision to reconstruct Berlin Palace in its outer form has now been taken, yet murmurings of displeasure and vehement, often polemic criticism of the project do not want to die away. Opponents call it ‘neo-Historicism’, a ‘fake’ or a ‘lie’, as the palace’s almost total destruction through its demolition in the early years of the GDR should, they say, be seen as an historical act of German post-War history. They also claim that rebuilding the palace would go against our principles of how to look after historic buildings, which are based on the fundamental policy of preservation, not reconstruction. And as in this particular case, apart from the foundations and remnants of cellar walls, nothing remains of the upper structure, they turn this guiding principle into an uncompromising diktat. It is, however, a diktat that the nations of Eastern Europe chose not to follow after the catastrophic destruction of the last World War. The loss of historic structures was just too painful to bear. They had parts of the old town of Gdansk rebuilt, likewise the centre of Warsaw with its previously destroyed royal palace. In St. Petersburg, too, the Russian historic preservation authority reconstructed ruined buildings or filled in holes shot in their walls in the original form. In Austria and Germany, too, people were certainly not always prepared to follow the aforementioned principles. Dresden’s Zwinger Palace was not left as a shattered rump, but was restored to its former glory with the utmost care and the use of highly skilled craftsmen. The city’s Frauenkirche is the latest example of such an approach, while in Munich a block of buildings on Maximilianstrasse that had been sacrificed to the traffic was rebuilt, not as a so-called ‘critical reconstruction’, but painstakingly following the original design, as they also hope and plan to do in Berlin with the Bauakademie, likewise destroyed through demolition. In all the cities mentioned above it was not the individual building that was seen as the valuable piece of historic heritage, but the complete street and public space – the ensemble! And this also answers the question in respect of Berlin Palace, which was the most important part of a larger whole. It gave the centre of

The diagonal visual link between opera house and Schinkel’s Neue Wache (Extract from a picture of a parade by Franz Krüger, 1829)

View from the Linden promenade to the temple-like front of von nobelsdorff’s opera house. (Extract from a painting by Eduard Gaertner, 1853)

the city its cohesion. As a result of its demolition this was lost, making it then almost impossible to recognise how the remaining buildings were designed to relate to each other. Now, you could naturally ask what it was that made Berlin so architecturally unique and noteworthy, setting this city apart from other major cities in Europe. If we think of ‘Unter den Linden’, which used to lead as a broad, tree-lined avenue up to the palace and today without this building encounters an empty space, then there are also major axes in Munich, Paris or Rome that are similar and perhaps even grander. So do we have to repair Berlin as a work of urban development art if in an ever-merging Europe substitutes already exist? Can Berlin not be spared the obligations of tradition in order to go its own, above all new way? Let us first attempt to explain what it is that makes this city unique and very special. A comparison of the

five most famous avenues of Europe may show similarities, but it shows differences as well. The most closely related appears to be Paris and the Champs-Elysées. There we have the spatial climax to the road in the form of the Louvre and its grand forecourt. This, however, is a situation that did not come about in the form that we are able to experience it today until 1871, when the burnt-out Tuileries Palace was demolished. Thus now the spatial flow, coming down from the Place de l’Etoile is caught by the Louvre’s side wings and west-facing front and has unmistakably reached its destination, the centre of the city and of the nation. In Berlin it was different! With the help of the beautiful veduta of painters Eduard Gaertner or Franz Krüger it is possible to describe the city layout in the first half of the 19th century, especially the route from the Brandenburg Gate to the palace, with the key part being primarily

the last third of this route, which in our day is sadly greatly impaired by traffic and road markings. Pariser Platz was the vestibule, the reception room and the start of the city. From there began the avenue of linden trees, with thoroughfares for horse and carriage down either side and a broad central strip for a casual stroll. Stepping out from under the leafy canopy of this eight-hundredmetre long promenade onto Opernplatz, passers-by experienced the ‘Forum Fridericianum’ as an asymmetrical extension of space, with which they could have broken out of the linearly aligned path. However, architect Wenzeslaus von Knobelsdorff had given the opera house such a striking temple-like front that it was bound to draw people’s eyes and movement towards it (illustration 1). Thus here, then still untroubled by any stream of cars, people were already drawn away from the centre of the road towards the side, without however leaving the ‘Linden’, which at that point was now a treeless avenue accompanied solely by buildings. The front of the opera house had, and still has, such a great magnetic power that it stopped people diverting into the Forum Fridericianum. At the same time, however, the temple-like look is so sublime that at a relatively short distance from it the observer again stands back. Pausing for a moment, people then notice the second temple-like hall diagonally opposite on the other side of the road – Karl Friedrich Schinkel’s ‘Neue Wache’ (New Guard House – illustration 2.) Thus the pedestrian gets drawn in a diagonal line by this next eye-catching element and crosses the road, only then – again pausing – to turn towards the third magnet, the Kronprinzenpalais (Crown Prince’s Palace), which following its remodelling was also given a colonnaded front by architect Heinrich Strack in 1856 (illustration 3). Once again the walker crosses the road and then notices the next diagonal visual link to the Zeughaus (Old Arsenal) with its temple-like gable above the central projection. Thus a pendulum movement was created that led the road’s spatial flow in a zigzag course towards the royal palace. However, before you entered the area of the royal residence, Schinkel’s bridge with its groups of statues created a gateway situation (illustration 4). It captured the pendulum move-

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Unter den Linden opening out onto the Lustgarten, with palace, cathedral and Altes Museum. Based on a pencil drawing by K. F. Schinkel, 1823

ment, bundled it up and moulded it back into a straight path heading for the palace. Then, however, came the remarkable – and in comparison to Paris – totally different element: in Berlin the high and also very long palace façade did not bring the movement to a halt. The building stood at an angle to the spatial flow, which glided off of it and turned into the ‘Lustgarten’, the city’s primary forum (illustration 4). And it was only there that it came to rest, caught between the front of the palace and the ‘Altes Museum’ (Old Museum), the second important building by Karl Friedrich Schinkel. We thus found ourselves in an area of contrasts, which as an architectural composition gained its greatest appeal from the juxtaposition of the façades of these two buildings. As different as they were, they both nevertheless had an equal aura and gravitas to keep the space in balance. Given what was in itself a very difficult initial scenario, this was a work of genius by Schinkel. He had given his museum a colonnaded front, thus forging the entire building into a single monumental entity. This device was necessary, as he could not compete with the size of the palace on the opposite side of the gardens. His ‘giant order’ therefore extends over both storeys and thus conceals the fact that there are two floors one above the other. In order to then lessen the monumentality somewhat, he chose the Ionic order for his columns and decorated the rear wall of the front portico with a cycle of pictures that are designed to overcome barriers of grandeur and invite people to come in and take a look. In terms of its outer form he modelled this construction on Greek stoas. With this the ‘Lustgarten’ was transformed into an agora, a people’s forum, and thus to the showcase centre of the city. Predominant until then, the palace became the border piece of this public space. It opened itself up, however, through its ‘Lustgarten’ portals, from which any monumental character had already been taken by the orangery feel given to them by Baroque architect Andreas Schlüter. Despite being smaller in size, the

new museum building on the other side of the square would then have thus almost become the more dominant, as the high, two-storey colonnade looks like the front of a temple and elevates the stoa into a holy shrine of the fine arts – a temple of the muses. However, you only fully appreciate that when we go inside the building and reach the central domed hall. There is no sign of this from outside as the dome is hidden behind a raised, cubic structure, thus making its impact all the more surprising. Here the entire flow of movement through this aligned sequence of buildings finally comes to a stop and fades away in stately tranquillity. Now you could easily jump to the premature conclusion that in the ensemble described here Schinkel’s museum alone and not the palace is the most important element and the culmination of the whole. But in such an isolated state as we see it today it gets misunderstood. It stands there with no interrelationships within the urban fabric. It is missing the juxtaposition with the contrasting, Baroque façade. And just how important Schinkel regarded the way in which the two buildings corresponded to each other is shown by an etching sketched by him in his volume of ‘Architektonische Entwürfe’ (Architectural Designs – illustration 5). Behind the portico front of his museum he created a stairway with an panoramic gallery so that people could view from there, raised above the level of the busy square, the whole urban space and the juxtaposition with the royal palace. And now we are faced in the first instance with the question of whether we want to recreate this space with its exciting contrasts. And that is without yet addressing the pros and cons of reconstructing the palace. If we want to retain the city’s most important square, its former heart, with its architectural frame, then we could indeed also consider a new building to take the place of the royal residence. Numerous proposals have in fact also been submitted and although none of them were satisfactory, the issue of a

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independence through the contrast in their architectural demeanour. With any new build that would be the most important thing that would need to be considered in respect of this city planning situation. But if we try to imagine how a façade on this site could look, then the answer to the question remains totally unclear. There are certainly very many possibilities, which, however, show us that our architecture is fragmented in many different directions. That has already been shown by unconvincing design proposals featuring strict functionality or embarrassing gimmickry. However, that has nothing to do with the abilities or creativity of our contemporary architects. The end of the twentieth century clearly heralded a time of change. Architects may not like to be told so, but the ‘post modern’ movement was already a criticism of ‘modern’ architecture and, like other architectural styles, definitely bore Mannerist traits that are com-

‘modern’ structure keeps getting raised, often with an aggressive undertone and stridently calling for a Michelangelo, a Bernini or a Schlüter of our day. But he has yet to appear. And with our totally different methods of design what architectural style should he indeed choose? It would, for example, as has already happened elsewhere, be a fatal mistake to reproduce the monumental character of the Altes Museum with, for instance, a similar sequence of pillars breaking up the great size of the building as a ‘giant order’ matching the museum’s columns. We would be veering there, without meaning to, into the environs of fascist architecture. Plus the main allure of the square Panoramic gallery in the Altes Museum with view of the with the lovely, Lustgarten and palace on the opposite side. (K. F. Schinkel, Collection of Architectural Designs, Berlin, handed-down name of ‘Lust- 1866, page 43) garten’ lay in the antithesis of palace and museum. It parable to 16th century trends. The was not a case of two façades mutu- reconstruction of the German pavilally competing for dominance. They ion in Barcelona, which Mies van respected each other, did not de- der Rohe had built for the internamand any subjugation from their tional expo in 1929 and that as a recounterpart and maintained their sult of demolition no longer existed,

The ‘Crown Prince’s Palace’, remodelled by Heinrich Stack in 1856-58, with its portico in front of the central projection.

42 The Berliner Schloss Post is a yearning look back to the early days of our era. But 80 years have passed since then. We cannot remain stuck in a rut, committed to classically modern architecture. It has to change with the times and this process is already in a very eventful phase. We are currently in a crisis, which, however, is experimenting and looking creatively for new ways of doing things. Yet no matter how imaginative and interesting the diversity of design may now be, it nevertheless clearly bears the signs of a general uncertainty. And this uncertainty, these traits of crisis cannot be allowed to stamp the character of a building that is to stand on the most important site of the city of Berlin, in its centre, at its heart. There is also something else that complicates matters greatly: the palace had a façade facing the Lustgarten that was a good 200 metres in length and almost 30 metres high. These days we hardly ever tackle long, even rows of windows in such dimensions. If accentuated elements were added through changes in the rhythm or structure, that would destroy the distinguished, calm unison that needs to be maintained here as a counterpart to the museum. The new building also cannot be allowed to become a stand-alone sculpture, the façade not permitted to be a backdrop for some graphic linear gimmickry! However, the building should not have a monotone feel and in order to achieve that we lack an important design element that Baroque architecture possessed. Only it had the ability with architectural ornamentation to serenely transmit extreme grandeur, to convey a monumental air and despite the sense of gravity to also have a joyful countenance. Yet still to come is the critical question of whether in this era we are still able to achieve the quality of Baroque façade architecture. The palace in Berlin was a masterpiece of architect and sculpture Andreas Schlüter. How can we therefore be so impudent as to copy such an outstanding, unique building with its great decorative sculptures? This admonition is constantly getting levelled against the reconstruction from an art and architectural history perspective. Yet it is important here to remember first of all that, as the king’s chief architect, Andreas Schlüter had many tasks and we would be foolish to imagine that on this major palace project has was also able to find much time for chiselling. He will have made masters, sometimes getting personally involved. Then, however, there were lots of helpers who created the ornamental pieces with greater or lesser degrees of skill. And the inevitable differences in quality (as

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Unter den Linden, looking east from the Staatsbibliothek (National Library)

can incidentally still be seen from the preserved remnants) hardly mattered, as the complicated pieces were mainly mounted at a great height on the façade’s fascia and thus out of reach of any close examination. The two portals on the Lustgarten side of the palace will present more of a problem. But there too we should not underestimate our sculptures’ talents. They have already done some outstanding work. The Hercules on the Rampart Pavilion of Dresden’s Zwinger Palace is, for example, also a copy from the post-War era and in no way fails to do justice to the original! The statues on the parapet of Berlin’s Zeughaus have been replaced by reproductions, as what really matters is the overall impression. The work

of Schlüter or his team of sculptures should be available to be studied closely by viewing the remaining originals in an exhibition. About one thing, however, we have to be clear: a reconstructed palace is and always will be a copy. That cannot be changed! But the stubborn aversion to a reconstruction espoused in a few journals is, as we know, not just based on that. There are more reconstructed ‘historic’ buildings in the world than we would like to admit. Just think of the Campanile on St. Mark’s Square in Venice. In Berlin, however, we are burdened by the Prussian factor, our own past with its great catastrophes. And it is above all from this distaste for the chequered course of our history that the rejec-

Central Berlin 1937. Aerial photograph, taken from the west. With a huge footprint measuring around a 120 x 200m and an eaves height of 31m (74m up to the top of the dome), the palace dominated the heart of the city. The showcase Unter den Linden boulevard began at the Brandenburg Gate, based on the propylaeae of Athens, which was the gateway to the palace. The palace in turn formed the final point of this important avenue and was the gravitational centre of old Berlin.

The Berliner Schloss Post


tion of the Hollenzollern’s palace also stems. However, quite apart from the fact that the generally disseminated picture of matters Prussian is largely distorted, we must not in this case transfer the politics of that era onto the building. When Schlüter designed the palace and when construction began in 1699, there was no Prussian state yet in existence. The client was still the Electoral Prince of Brandenburg and he will have scarcely had any notion of what is specifically Prussian any more than Schlüter, who orientated himself on Rome and Paris. His role model was Bernini! The Louvre project must have fascinated him, so too the clear lines of Versailles, from which Schlüter drew his inspiration for the design of the portal on the south façade of his palace. Contrary to what some claim, there was nothing Wilhelmine at all to be found on the outside of the palace. The ‘Weiße Saal’ (White Hall) inside the palace, remodelled by Ernst von Ihne, did belong to the Wilhelmine Period. However, Ihne was a student of the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris and the ‘Wilhelmine’ style, like many other building styles in cosmopolitan cities, followed the French architecture of the time and was certainly not Prussian. In this era too German architecture was influenced by Europe and showed that, as in the past, it was interlinked with the major artistic cities’ international exchange of design forms. And the role Berlin played in this was not just one of recipient, of taker. The city was also a source of ideas that shaped European architecture! When we go, for instance, into the inner courtyard of the Louvre we recognise reflected in the floors erected under the rule of Napoleon I by Charles Percier and Pierre Francois Leonard Fontaine the portal of Berlin Palace’s south façade, which – as already mentioned – was, however, already a product itself of influences from Italy and France. Thus, despite all the wars, there was a give and take in intellectual life and thus also in art. The loss of the palace, however, means that this valuable exchange of thoughts and ideas is no longer clearly visible in Berlin. Old plans, wooden models and photographs are not adequate to enable us to experience it again. And yet the experience is what matters! Only with the urban fabric and palace façades restored will it be possible to experience and truly grasp the three-way relationship between Rome, Paris and Berlin and it is precisely because of the dark passages in our German history that this tradition is so important, as it places us visibly within the context of the European community.

War Damage in 1945 – Demolition in 1950 On February 3rd, 1945, during one of the heaviest Allied air raids, incendiary and demolition bombs destroyed the Berliner Schloss [Berlin Palace]. It burned for almost four days. No efforts were made to extinYet it turned out that the huge building was less damaged than the Charlottenburger Schloss [Charlottenburg Palace] in the western part of Berlin. Burned out, the Schloss remained solid and firm in its foundations. Its demolition five years later was clearly an arbitrary act: For ideological reasons, the political leadership of the German Democratic Republic wanted to root out Prussian history. This was the reason, why the Berliner Stadtschloss [Berlin City Palace], the Potsdamer Stadtschloss [Potsdam City Palace] as well as the Potsdamer Garnisonskirche [Potsdam Garrison Church] were demolished. There is no doubt that these buildings could have been reconstructed. The Charlottenburger Schloss [Charlottenburg Palace], the Würzburger Residenzschloss [Wuerzburg Residence], and many other architectural gems, destroyed during the World War II and subsequently rebuilt, may serve as proof. When, in July of 1950, the GDR’s Council of Ministers decided on the demolition of the Schloss, opposition mounted. Protests were voiced across the political spectrum. Here, are some statements by advocates and opponents of the Schloss’s demolition. Even today they ring with emotion.

guish the fire. After almost two years of daily air raids, the Berliners had resigned. There was no use of trying to put out a fire, when another air raid would undo all the attempts the following day.

Berlin’s destroyed city center with Schloss and Berliner Dom [Berlin Cathedral] in 1945

»The center of our Capital, the Lustgarten [Pleasure Garden], and the area of the current Schlossruine [ruins of the Palace] have to become a great parade square, where we will express the people’s will to fight and rebuild our State«. (Walter Ulbricht, Secretary-General of the SED [Sozialistische Einheitspartei Deutschlands – Socialist Unity Party of Germany, the East German Communist Party] in 1950.) »Therefore, my conscience is clear. Right now, everyone is making a lot of noise. Once the building is gone, there will not be anyone talking about it anymore«. (OttoGrotewohl, Head of State of the GDR, in 1950.)

»We had a choice: Palace or Cathedral. Had we pulled down the Cathedral, we would have been accused of ‘attacking the church’. We would have provided the West with ammunition for years to come. Therefore, we decided to tear down the Schloss. We would be able to deal with the art historians all right«. (Wilhelm Girnus, a then Under-State Secretary for Technical and Secondary Education to-be, in 1951.)

Demolition of a part of the façade on the south side of the Schloss; the explosion caught two street sweepers by surprise

»As long as someone does not forcibly shut my mouth, I will not stop protesting against this decision, and indeed, not as a supporter of the West, but rather as a son of the East who is bound in my inmost being to Berlin and its culture and who is at pains in questions of culture to give preference to the East as to those things which it has a right to through its great legacy of art, like the Berliner Schloss.« (Prof. Dr. Richard Hamann, Dean of the Art History Faculty of the East Berlin Humboldt University, 1950) »In consideration of its European artistic importance, and its historical, urban, and social historical importance, and further in view of the fact that the Schloss is a testimony to Berlin architecture over 5 centuries, The German Academy of Science opposes the planned final destruction of the Schloss with the gravest misgivings. The Academy does this in fulfillment of its responsibility and its duty to involve itself in the preservation of the culture heritage of the German people in general and the protection of monuments in particular. Among the objects of this sort to be looked after, the Schloss stands in the foremost rank.« (Prof. Dr. Johannes Stroux, President of the Academy of Science, East Berlin, 1950) »The resulting formlessly spreading open space would have on its eastern edge (not even at its center) the cathedral as its only accent – that pseudotechtonic construction of misunderstood overblown pomp which has always disturbed the viewer and now, in its isolation, will be even more obtrusive. Do we really want this? Next to the towering cathedral dome, no building in the same avenue – only separated from it by the width of one street – can be erected that can somehow dominate the area. It will always be repressed by the cathedral.« (Ernst Gall 1950) »The people in power in East Berlin perceive the fame of the Schloss as a discordant note from a long passed cult of nobility. This has irritated their sensitive eardrums and must now be hushed. They prefer to hear their own noises on the demonstration square which they have built on the site of the demolished Schloss. Yet this bleak square will also one day become a monument, a monument to lack of respect, to narrow mindedness, and to spiritual poverty.« (Prof. Ragnar Josephson, Svenska Dagbladet, Stockholm, 1950)

Berliner Schloss, September 1950. Portal V with the pilaster Hermes “Spring” and “Summer”. View into the most important hall of the Schloss, the Knight’s Hall. One can clearly see how well preserved the plasterwork of the burned out September 9, 1950. The southwest corner of the Schloss room still is after has been torn down 5 1 ⁄ 2 years of being exposed to the weather without protection. The Knight’s Hall could have been reconstructed to a great extent in accordance with the original. Yet all this was destroyed in the demolition.

This is what remained after the removal of the Schloss: The desolate demonstration plaza 1951

T hPost e nT eh we Bneerw lin ch l oS ss HSuSm– bhoulm dt 52 The Berliner Schloss B eerrlSi n er c h–l o B oflodru T Fmo ru m The Berliner Schloss Post 45

The Humboldt Forum: Reconstruction and development of Berlin Palace by Prof. arch. Franco Stella The reconstruction of Berlin Palace is based on a resolution of the German parliament, the Bundestag, passed in 2004. This resolution stipulates that the Humboldt Forum is to be created within the footprint of the former palace, with its three Baroque outer façades and the inner Baroque façades of the eastern courtyard, i.e. the Schlüter Courtyard (Schlüterhof). It further stipulates that a dome should again crown the western side, although nothing is said about its design. This order of parliament produces two requirements: the reconstruction of the historic façades as authentically as possible, for which in this case the Stuhlemmer firm of architects in Berlin is responsible, and the planning of the modern parts of the building, which is my task. In the competition design that I submitted – and, of course, in the final version – the reconstructed and new-

ly constructed parts come together to form one holistic structure, with no attempt at any compromise of style or design between the respective parts. That means that the architecture of the new combines with the architecture of the old on the basis of the same rational rules and principles. There will be no stylistic assimilation, much less any syncretism, which in itself would already be an expression of a taste for a specific era or of a personal architectural style. The old and the new will instead have their own specific form. The primary principle is respect for the identity of each style. The brief to reconstruct the historic façades rules out any modernisation of the

Baroque style – for instance, following the principles of so-called ‘critical reconstruction’. Conversely, however, the new parts to be built will not be a mere paraphrase of the old: there is neither any intention here to create a simplified version of the old – for instance, a cut-down modern neo-Baroque – nor any question of ‘antiquifying’ the modern style of design. Indeed, it is precisely through this relationship with the old that the new attains the character of being timelessly modern. This notion of architectural beauty is based on the visualisation of history and widely understandable forms. The new structure is designed to complement the old palace so that together both parts can fulfil the phys-

ical and intellectual task intended for them. What does this physical and intellectual task entail? As mentioned above, the size of the future Humboldt Forum will largely match the interior dimensions of Berlin Palace, which Andreas Schlüter, Johann Friedrich von Eosander and Martin Böhme developed at the start of 18th century into the complex that then served the Prussian kings and German Kaisers as their official residence through to the end of the First World War. The 18th century architects modelled their work on scores of monuments from Roman antiquity, on Roman Renaissance and Roman Baroque, excerpts of which they synthesised into a new style of design. Following the First World War, the palace served as a museum. Between 1943 and 1945 it suffered extensive damage. In 1950, it fell victim to the political ideology of the

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The Palace from the Boulevard Unter den Linden

GDR and was demolished. Two decades later the so-called ‘Palace of the Republic’ rose up in its place. In the future, under the name the ‘Humboldt Forum’, the palace will be a ‘global centre’ of art and culture, especially for the presentation of non-European cultures, that will combine with the neighbouring Museum Island to form a “single conceptual unit of cultural heritage, knowledge, encounter and experience”. It is important to point out that when the members of the German parliament passed the resolution to rebuild the Baroque façades they were unquestionably convinced of the extraordinary quality of Schlüter’s and Eosander’s architecture. However, the resolution did not express any fundamental aesthetic preference. It was not a matter of valuing Baroque architecture as fundamentally better than its modern counterpart. Rather parliament perceived a high cultural and societal value in the reconstruction of the façades, because they do indeed have an extraordinary cultural and societal value. For it is only with its historic façades that the Humboldt Forum can arouse an awareness of history and provide a sense of identity. Essentially, I think that adding modern structures to the old can succeed if you pick up on some elementary

elements and thus carry these over into a modern form of design that perceives them as their ‘translation’ into the language of modern architecture. New lines are thus to an extent being added in modern form to an old text, while its core message remains the same. These additional lines can even be a kind of commentary that explains and interprets the old. In concrete terms this means that the new picks up on a building’s type or underlying idea. In this case

The Agora

it means that the former significance of the palace also gets absorbed into the new parts that are to be added. For the palace was, indeed, not just an architectural symbol of power, it also housed a very significant library and a large art collection. It is from these that the Berlin State Library and the Berlin Museums later evolved. Furthermore the Schlüter Courtyard was designed as a forum, in which in its day court life was played out as if in a theatre. The in-

tention now is that the parts to be built in a modern style will recall all of these elements – forum, library, art collection and theatre. Clearly this is not comparable with recalling an actual person, an individual entity. Rather it is about creating an analogy of place, function and outer appearance. The Humboldt Forum, built on the site of the demolished palace, is intended to pick up on key attributes of the original building and adapt to them in a modern way (as Schlüter, Eosander and Böhme also adapted their work to Roman architecture in the 18th century): with his modern architecture the architect thus enters a tradition that he now interprets in a new way – namely, in one that does not destroy the tradition, yet fits in well in the new age and suits modern building projects. For this reason, the palace’s Baroque façades do need to be reconstructed in their original form: this is not about rebuilding a palace, but about remembering history. The new Humboldt Forum should be a place of cultural commemoration and cultural self-affirmation. On top of this comes the additional task of the palace needing to fit perfectly into the context of the surrounding buildings. The new structure is designed to fulfil these requirements to such a degree that it will give the impression that Berlin Palace had always been

54 The Berliner Schloss B eer nh er c h–l o B oflodru T fmo ru m The Berliner Schloss Post 47 T hPost e nT eh we Bneerw lin rlSi c l oSss HSuSm– bhoulm dt there. To avoid any misunderstandings let me stress that this will not be a case of manipulating history, of acting as if the palace had not been demolished, as if there had been no World War, no GDR and no Palace of the Republic. Rather it is about the concept and design per se being so in keeping that the building feels totally natural in its overall appearance and on this site. The building must be utterly credible. Let me explain these ideas more precisely. Firstly, the outer walls are going to consist of solid masonry over one metre thick. The façades are thus not mock structures made up of thousands of individual pieces and simply hung on or applied to the body of the building. Instead they spread around it like a skin with no joints. What’s more, via the windows’ stone frames and reveals and the fully integrated cornices the façade surfaces are joined firmly to the core masonry. From a technical perspective alone it would therefore be totally impossible for the palace to be initially built without its Baroque outer skin, as occasionally claimed in the press. Secondly, another element of any ‘credible’ reconstruction ought to be that via the north, west, south and Schlüter Courtyard façades called for by parliament the insides of all the parts that directly carry on the outer appearance should be incorporated into the reconstruction as well. That means in the first place the insides of portals II (the former city side), III (west side) and IV (Pleasure Gardens side), which all led into the former Eosander Courtyard (Eosanderhof). Eosander had designed them as counterparts to the external portals and thus linked them with these via colonnades. The competition design at least then also makes provision for the recreation of the remaining façades of the Eosander Courtyard. And last but not least, the intention is for the dome that Friedrich August Stüler erected over portal risalit III in the middle of the 19th century to rise up again. Erecting this in some modern form, as allowed as an alternative by the parliament resolution, is not the plan. Finally, it is also envisaged that the staircases that used to exist behind the three risalits of the Schlüter Courtyard and in which the façade architecture carried on through to the inside will also be reconstructed within the medium term. On the other hand, some parts will be completely redesigned. These include the west side of the Schlüter Courtyard, which will replace two buildings from the 16th and early 17th century. Together with the eastern end of the adjacent Eosander Courtyard, the back of this wing

forms an extended passage that is being called the Palace Forum (Schlossforum). Within this Palace Forum the previously mentioned insides of portals II and IV, which had always served as the courtyard’s entrance and exit, form the two ends. As such they form eye-catching elements inside the passage that give the elongated space a special dynamism. The eastern façade facing the Spree is also being totally redesigned. Called the Belvedere, it will replace a very inhomogeneous group of

The Schlüter Court Yard

buildings from the Middle Ages and Renaissance. Being created on the site of the former Eosander Courtyard there is also the so-called Agora, which, in addition to the four wings that border it, also includes two inserted cubes. In terms of placing Berlin Palace in context with its surroundings, the Palace Forum forms the entrance courtyard to the Humboldt Forum. This is designed to have the effect that, unlike the old palace, the new building turns out not to be a closed

block that separates the south from Museum Island to the north. Rather the palace is intended – as an integral part of Museum Island – to now become a link between it and the wider city. To this end the Palace Forum creates a passage that will be open 24/7 from Palace Square (Schlossplatz) in the south to the Pleasure Gardens (Lustgarten) in the north and from there to the broad Unter den Linden avenue, leading off to the west. Moreover the passage gives the palace the public nature that it needs in order to satisfy its role as a forum. As far as its design is concerned, it is adorned down both sides with rows of columns lined one above the other, which are reminiscent of the colonnaded halls of Greek and Roman squares and act as a reference to the place’s public character. In proportion and style they are also reminiscent of numerous famous squares in European cities, such as the Piazza degli Uffizi in Florence. As is the case there, the architecture follows the classic rules of solid-wall and column-based construction. The Agora is a spacious entrance and reception hall, a kind of covered piazza, which stretches out between the Baroque courtyard walls and the inserted cubes, as well as between the cubes themselves. While in the case of the Baroque façades the wall is the primary element into which the windows are in effect placed, the modern façades consist of a form of sectional architecture, which in line with the socalled trilithon system is created from a series of columns carrying an entablature. It is thus like a hypostyle, i.e. a form of architecture that in contrast to the classic peristyle has the colonnade not on the outside but on the inside. Its open, grid-patterned roof also resembles a glass sky. Cutting through the Agora along its central axis is a staircase that leads below ground to the lower floor. Here there will be rooms that are designed to be utilised by a wider public: theatre facilities, an auditorium, a restaurant and a café. On the east side of the Agora two flights of stairs, which are clearly visible through the façade, run away from each other up to the floors above. On the first floor to the rooms being used for academic cultural purposes (library and Humboldt University facilities) and on the second into the museum exhibition area with exhibits of non-European art. The Belvedere forms a façade to the palace that through its very modernity seeks to make a connection with the modern post-War architecture around Alexanderplatz. At the

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Stella's design of the Spreefacade

same time it also forms a public space stretching out to the water. In order to make it clear that this is a public place and not a residential building the competition design provides for open balconies, behind which expansive stairways lead up

to the viewing platform on the roof. Over and above its great scenographic character, the combination of looking and climbing maps the façade of the Old Museum (Altes Museum), which as we know Karl Friedrich Schinkel had designed as

Reconstruction of important interior rooms of the historic palace still possible at a later date The palace’s suites and stairways of great historic value are being planned in such a way that it will be possible for later generations to reconstruct the most important elements of the palace’s interior. At present this is not possible for both financial and political reasons. Stella’s design, however, achieves the optimum scenario for a con-

sensus right across society. Nor is this approach uncommon. In Augsburg too it was 30 years after the modern reconstruction of the famous Renaissance town hall that its interior ‘Goldener Saal’ (Golden Hall) was recreated.The same can happen at Berlin Palace – if that’s one day what society wants.

a response to Schlüter’s palace façades. As the example of the Belvedere shows, the idea is that the modern parts of the future Humboldt Forum should do more than just further develop the palace of Schlüter and Eo-

sander. The intention is to further develop, and to a certain extent complete, the Museum Island as a whole. The Humboldt Forum is thus designed to help close the gaping, open wound that currently still scars the heart of city.

Apocalyptic scars of demolition to be visible in Humboldt Forum Running north to south below the dome-topped Eosander Portal there used to be a 60-metre passageway with a solid tunnel vault. When the portal was blown up, hundreds of tons of dynamite tore up this passageway and lifted the portal 30 centimetres into the air, before it broke up as it came crashing down. All that is left of the passageway are the craters made by the dynamite and the tattered sidewalls, as seen here. It is intended to make this evidence of the apocalypse of the palace’s demolition visible within the new construction. As people in future walk through the Eosander Portal they will see the transverse passageway illuminated beneath their feet through glass panels in the ground.

56 The Berliner Schloss Post

R e c o nRsetcru o nc a ro n daegRen a g e o ncsttiRu t inodn m ao nd dem

The Berliner Schloss Post


Construction and reconstruction of historic continuity A copy is no fraud, a facsimile no forgery, a replica no crime and a reconstruction no lie by Winfried Nerdinger

Dresden’s Frauenkirche before the War, in ruins in 1945 and after being rebuilt from 1994 to 2005

Down the centuries the training of artists and architects has been based on copying models and templates, while art and architecture developed via reproduction, adaptation, citation and repetition. These principles were also part of the foundations, for example, of all Roman art. It nevertheless has its own identity and creativity and buzzwords from the ‘arsenal of modern art history’ such as ‘copyist’s art’ or ‘eclecticism’ ‘in no way do justice’ to the ‘core nature’ of this period. Palladio’s Villa Rotunda spawned hundreds of copies, adaptations and reworkings, which over many centuries carried his ideas on into numerous countries and inspired new trends. But they did not deceive anyone or rewrite history. There is only any sense in passing moral judgement on ‘reproduction’ when it intentionally sets out to deceive in order to gain an advantage or when a truth is ascribed to the original that ought to be afforded only to it and therefore any form of iterative reproduction gets effectively devalued as an immoral process (albeit that ‘original’ here generally only means a building’s state at a fixed point in time, which itself has frequently been repaired, modified or restored over the course of history). Architects who reconstruct a lost or ruined building are not deceiving anybody, nor forging anything. The reconstruction is always a new building, which, despite historic styles, is always recognisable as such to people

of the present day. It also always remains identifiable as a reproduction to future generations via appropriate sources and documentation. Anyone looking at Christopher Wren’s famous Royal Hospital in the Chelsea district of London learns only from a small panel at the entrance that part of the building was destroyed in the First World War and reconstructed in the 1920s and that another part was hit by a bomb in the Second World War and subsequently rebuilt in its

old form. At the entrance to Polish churches there is often a photograph of the ruined building during the War and a notice giving the date of its reconstruction. There is no lying, no falsification or deceit going on here, but rather through the reproduction of structural forms a memory is being preserved and passed on to subsequent generations. Anyone who does not see the notices or who believes that the old towns of Warsaw, Gdansk, Wroclaw and Poznan are ‘historic’ is not being deceived, rather they are poorly informed. After the First World War, as hundreds of towns and villages and thousands of buildings lay in ruins in Belgium, northern France and East Prussia there were countrywide campaigns calling for ‘Reconstruction’. This was both a political aim and the wish of the people and it went ahead without any great debate about whether this would ‘falsify’ history or create buildings that were ‘lies’. Some changes were made based on functional requirements, supposedly national forms were occasionally given greater emphasis and some people promoted modelling of the buildings ‘in keeping with the times’. Overall, however, what was built were historic reproductions, some of which are now of national importance as evidence of the past and have contributed to shaping the ‘cultural memory’ of subsequent generations. If you walk today through the centre of Arras, Diksmuide or Ypres, you

will find yourself in a town with an historic dimension, even though almost everything you see before you originates from the third decade of the last century. It was not until after the Second World War that - led by architects and preservationists - there were any public moral debates about reconstruction. In light of the destruction and wartime crimes these gained a particular ethical dimension and persuasiveness. Modern architects, whose self-perception and understanding of history had been shaped by the battle against the ‘false’ architecture of the 19th century, against the supposedly uncreative, eclectic use of historic forms, declared any reconstruction a lie and a betrayal of the present. In a 1947 manifest it thus categorically said: “We must not allow our destroyed heritage to be reconstructed in historical style. It must be created in a new form for new tasks.” They wanted to clear away the psychological wreckage along with the physical ruins and then build up a new, better world. The use of historic design and the expression of modernity were reduced to the moral opposites of lie and honesty, a polarisation that often remained dominant even after history returned via the architecture of the post-modern movement. The fact that notions of honest, contemporary, creative construction grew up out of the rejection of the supposedly dishonest, outmoded and uncreative Historicism of the 19th

50 The Berliner Schloss Post century and that today these notions get in the way of any sophisticated evaluation of reproduction or reconstruction does not generally get reflected, even though the achievements of Historicism have long since been placed on a par with the works of the Avant-garde and form an essential part of our cultural memory. With contemporary architecture claiming more and more to be based on artistic autonomy and creative individuality, an assessment made by Rudolf Schwarz way back in 1929 therefore becomes increasingly significant: it is conceivable, after all, he said, “that somebody might undertake architectural work using old forms of design. That, however, would have nothing to do with copying and he could even be a prophet. Conversely, most architects today are copyists. It’s just that they are copying non-understood new forms or spluttering out trendy jokes.” The moralising attitude of many people involved today in the preservation of architectural heritage also goes back to developments in the 19th century. Faced in 1849 with the growing loss of historic buildings as a result of industrialisation and urbanisation and with attempts at a form of compensation through ‘stylistically pure’ restoration and ‘creative’ reconstruction, John Ruskin invoked the importance of historic structures with moral pleading and phraseology: “Do not let us talk then of restoration. The thing is a lie from beginning to end. You may make a model of a building as you may of a corpse, and the model may have the shell of the old walls within it as your cast might have the skeleton, with what advantage I neither see nor care: but the building is destroyed, and that more totally and mercilessly than if it had sunk into a heap of dust, or melted into a mass of clay.” And if buildings really have to be demolished, he said, then “do it honestly and do not set up a lie in their place.” The moral discrediting and inquisitorial damnation – “falsifiers of old buildings belong on the slave boat” - of any form of reconstruction pursued by Ruskin and continued by Camillo Boito and Max Dvorák also led to the great ‘creative’ restoration and preservation achievements of Eugène-Emmanuel Viollet-le-Duc, George Gilbert-Scott and Ferdinand von Quast, which not only rescued countless historic structures but also shaped many generations’ concepts of history, not being adequately recognised to this day and being valued less highly than ‘scientific’ preservation. The fact that the modern (Western) heritage preservation movement, which was institutionalised to preserve historic buildings and monuments, sees itself as having

Recon o nc a R no d ag en age Rs e tcRu o ncsttiru t inodnmaondde m er one of the most important buildings of Historicism, in which the architecture of the Roman Baths of Caracalla had been reflected in a magnificent copy and transferred to a railway station complex, was – like Euston Station in London two years earlier – torn down. This occurred not least because its detractors were able to defame the design’s return to history and the use of historic forms as uncreative and dishonest. The only access to the viewing platform atop the historic This example Campanile in Venice used to be via a narrow staircase.In shows not only 1906 the authorities therefore aimed to install a lift. how tightly However, numerous metal tie rods were in the way.They bound to their were removed. The tower became unstable and collapsed. own era the All that was left was a pile of rubble. What is marveled at judgements of today is an authentic copy! even major personalities are, an obligation solely towards the his- but also relates to the general probtoric structures is wholly natural, as lem of any view back into history bethis is its task and purpose. ing frequently concentrated only on Its hard and fast rejection of recon- ‘progress’ and geared to the developstructions, which as new builds do ment of things new. Given this pernot fall in any way into the move- spective all efforts at preservation or ment’s domain, is, by contrast, mere- with a focus on the past get literally ly a case of moralising against a dif- lost from view. The entire history of ferent view. architecture, as of the visual arts, is, Reconstruction, however, in many however, a meshwork of innovation cases has nothing to do with ‘heri- and preservation, of upheaval and tage preservation’, but is rather a survival, of avant-garde and revival. memory culture process specific to a The history of architecture includes given epoch or culture accompanied not only new dawns, but also contiby religious or memorial aspects and nuity, periods of conscious resistance interests. If the primary aim is to pre- to innovation, eras of preservation serve a memory of architecture, the and retrospective tendencies. In addibuilding per se does not necessarily tion it is also a history of repairs, reshave to be ‘original’. torations and reconstructions, since In 1963, when the retention or demo- as a result of wars, natural disasters lition of Penn Station in New York, or simply weathering and use builddesigned by Beaux-Arts architects ings have constantly been damaged, McKim, Mead and White, was the destroyed, repaired and restored. The subject of heated debate, Bauhaus notion that everything that was ever founder Walter Gropius, who since built anywhere was ‘new’ is absurd 1937 had moulded several genera- and it was only those with a view fotions of young architects at Harvard, cussed on renewal that used to have declared: “Why, for instance, do we little interest in preservation work. dissipate our strength by fighting Most histories of architecture merely battles for the resurrection or preser- follow how Gothic forms spread and vation of structures which are monu- when and how they were first used in ments to a particularly insignificant which building in other countries. period in American architectural his- They show when the Renaissance tory, a period which, still unsure of came over the Alps from Italy and its own mission, threw the Roman how this manifested itself in Germatoga around its limbs to appease its ny and they analyse from where it nagging doubts. Pennsylvania Sta- was that Baroque design of space and tion in New York is such a case of façades emanated. The fact that Gothpseudotradition.” Despite protests, ic forms continued to survive into the

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18th century, that there were repeated tendencies towards using archaic styles, that destroyed vaults, towers and sections of façade were reconstructed based on what still remained and that ‘repairs’ were routine seems for determining paths to the present to be largely unimportant or esoteric. Comprehensive research studies into the various forms of Gothic survival architecture and into the history of restoration and preservation have, however, long since proved that as well as a history of change there was also one of continuity, of retention and indeed also of reconstruction. In his unpublished, and far too overlooked, three-volume Leipzig dissertation on the prehistory of the preservation of historic buildings Wolfgang Götz propagated as far back as 1956 a simply overwhelming wealth of material on a history of continuity in architecture. His study of building inscriptions and of bills, chronicles and lists of materials in the archives opened up a totally new view of building activities, which were geared not just to completing buildings but also to their continual restoration. While the way in which Historicism dealt with history used to be discounted as nothing more than uncreative, its gradual reassessment led from the 1960s to a plethora of studies that brought together and analysed the preservative and retrospective tendencies practically everywhere in architecture and visual art. Michael Hesse, Hermann Hipp, Peter Kurmann, Heinrich Magirius and many others repeatedly provided new evidence that architectural history can be seen not just one-dimensionally as an advance towards the present day, but must at the same time be woven together from warp and weft, from a synopsis of breaks and continuities. This is naturally not a German phenomenon. In 1986, in a comprehensive study Jukka Jokilehto provided a ‘History of Architectural Conservation’ on a comparative basis for England, France, Germany and Italy. In all of the works it is apparent that any history of restoration “cannot be separated from the history of reincorporating past forms”. From a perspective that embraces not just change but continuity as well, buildings that seem stylistically holistic to us today become recognisable as a testimony to many eras. This relates not just to the continued construction of Gothic religious buildings up to the early Classicist period or the ‘completions’ in the 19th century, but also to ‘historicising’ heightening of towers, replacement of buttresses and façade elements, insertions and even very generally to restorations, which pervade the timeline down the centuries. In the case of the Temple of Zeus at Olympia, for exam-

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The Abbey of Monte Cassino in Italy after its reconstruction (above). The war-ravaged abbey in 1944 (below)

ple, it has been possible to determine that it was repeatedly rebuilt after destruction in its old form and that in each instance this also involved the use of new constructional elements. The gallery reconstructed following a fire in 1481 at the foot of the great roof of Reims Cathedral copied “13th century forms extremely skilfully”, the south wall of the southern transept of the St. Servatius collegiate church in Quedlinburg was restored in its old form in the middle of the Renaissance in 1571, following the Huguenot demolitions several buildings were “reconstructed in a fashion that imitated the Romanesque style with scrupulous precision” in the early 17th century and the nave walls of the Romanesque imperial cathedral in Speyer are reconstructions from the period 1772 to 1778. It is thus definitely not the case that “the great architectural eras of the past never copied the styles of their ancestors”, as Walter Gropius claimed, telling his students: “You will search in vain for copies of the past that are supposed, for example, to preserve an outer ‘cosmetic’ conformity.” On the contrary, there have repeatedly been debates throughout history on whether a destroyed building should be reconstructed in its old form or built again based on the latest state of architectural development. When a fire destroyed the choir of Canterbury Cathedral in 1174, the monks and experts discussed whether to reconstruct it or build it anew in a Gothic design. Here the ‘Modernists’ won the day. After the Doge’s Palace in Venice was badly damaged by fire in 1577, the debate went back and forth on whether to restore it or modernise it in Renaissance form. The views of the experts, including An-

drea Palladio, were split, but here the previous state was largely recreated. After Speyer Cathedral was badly damaged on several occasions the argument was likewise won by those who wanted to restore conformity with the remaining structure, while in the case of San Paolo fuori le Mura Pope Leo XII ended the argument about ‘Old’ or ‘New’ in 1825 by ordering a reconstruction. When in 1937 during a discussion about modern architecture at Princeton University the Dean, Ely Jacques Kahn, suggested to his students rhetorically that if the prestigious old university were to be destroyed nobody would surely want to rebuild it in any modern form, he was shocked to find that the vast majority argued in favour of a new building. At that time Modernist architecture was on

The Schwarzhäupter House at Riga

the up in the USA and today the response would probably be different. And in 1947 a committee of experts appointed by the Cathedral Council recommended the complete reconstruction of Coventry’s destroyed cathedral. However, the design competition was won in 1951 by Basil Spence, the only entrant to combine the ruins with a new structure. When it is that buildings get reconstructed and when modernised depends in each instance on the state of the architectural debate and many other factors. This publication’s list of examples, split into ten sections, gives an overview of the motives involved. The often emotionally led or dogmatically intransigent discussions about reconstruction should be included in the public debate about ‘cultural memory’, as this is itself a form of awareness. Part of tackling the issue of cultural memory is a “duplication of levels: of the awareness of objects and of the reflection of the terms of precisely this awareness.” This means that the propositions of each point of view and the historical horizon must be included, as the key is to “specify the precise place in the present to which my historic design is going to refer as their vanishing point.” After the Second World War, the feeling of guilt for all the destruction and the dominance of the ‘International style’ hardly allowed any reconstructions in Germany. Thus it was only in 1959 on a visit to Warsaw that Rudolf Hillebrecht realised that Hanover, which had been rebuilt in a modern style under his direc-

tion, lacked an historical dimension and he himself then advocated a reconstruction of the Leibnizhaus. The fact that the reconstructions in Eastern Europe since 1989 are a process of eliminating the Soviet era and a means of linking back to each country’s respective national traditions is very evident. So too is the link between the desire for reconstruction in Germany with the change of generation and dissatisfaction with how the cities had been rebuilt. Furthermore the handling of the topic of reconstruction in the post-War period is generally characterised by concepts of breaking with tradition and of distancing oneself from history by highlighting discontinuities and fragments. Reconstruction is by contrast borne by the wish for continuity and conformity. However, this engineered recollection too is part of the contemporary creation of cultural identity. Therefore, even in the opinion of proponents of the Avant-garde such as Rem Koolhaas, “the gulf between preservation and modernity [ought] to be overcome”, as calling for restoration has long since been an integral part of the present. Reconstructions have just as much of a right to exist in present-day architecture as creative new constructions – a decision, however, needs to be taken in each individual case, taking into account the majority public view, on whether the design creates continuity or a break with the past. Architects like Carlo Scarpa, Luigi Snozzi, Giorgio Grassi and Álvaro Siza have shown in exemplary fashion that when it comes to building within an historic context originality matters less than serving history and the people. When Siza was commissioned to rebuild the Chiado, the Old Town of Lisbon, he declared: “The question of the façades is not important to me”. However, as a result of the reconstruction he improved the standard of living and the quality of life in the area. Done this way there would (perhaps) be less argument about reconstruction.

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For centuries reconstructions have proved their worth – for all sorts of reasons The Romans used the term ‘fanum’ to describe a holy place that was separated from the ‘profanum’ situated in front of it. Separating out holy areas for gods, miracle workers and saints from the everyday world is a fundamental principle for generating sacred significance and is part and parcel of almost every religion and culture.

Reconstruction in holy locations – religious and architectural continuity When and why a place is ascribed this importance can be based on a variety of different reasons. Places where ‘miracles’ or ‘apparitions’ occurred have, for instance, been ranked as being sacred, as have the places where saints or founders of religions were born, worked or died. Holy mountains, copses, springs and caves, the holy River Ganges, the burning bush of the Old Testament and whole towns such as Jerusalem and Mecca became places bearing sacred meaning. Holy locations developed in many cases into places of pilgrimage and thus also into significant economic factors. For centuries, whenever sacred buildings in a holy location have been damaged or destroyed they have been restored or rebuilt in exactly the same spot. In many cases this continuity related to the design of the building as well. Destroyed Greek temples were rebuilt in their old forms, as were the domes and minarets of Muslim mosques or the vaults and towers of Christian churches. When the church of San Paolo fuori le Mura in Rome, built over the grave of the Apostle Paul, burnt down in 1823, Pope Leo XII immediately ordered that the building be reconstructed not only in the same place but also ‘in pristinum’, in its old style, as faith, he said, had become intertwined with its form over the centuries. This approach also determined the countless reconstructions of religious buildings after the Second World War. While bitter debate often raged about how the cities were to be rebuilt, many destroyed churches were reproduced without discussion in – outwardly at least – their old form.

clared in 1945: “The Germans, who wanted to annihilate us as a nation, also destroyed our architectural heritage. The nation and our historic buildings are, however, as one and it is therefore positively our Warsaw’s Royal Palace after reconstruction (top) duty to rebuild and in 1945 after being blown up (below) them precisely as they were, as by are therefore particularly well suited doing so the nation and its heritage to directing people’s memories back gets passed on to future generations.” into history way beyond the lifetime The link between architectural heritof any individual. John Ruskin even age and national memory also determaintained that people could not re- mined the reconstruction of Colonial member at all without the help of ar- Williamsburg in the USA and ‘French’ chitecture. As buildings firmly link Quebec, as it did too the many reconthe public’s historic consciousness structions of national historical sites with places of significance to the his- following the two World Wars and tory of nation and state, they create a the collapse of the communist syscommon past and thus a strong bond tem in Eastern Europe. In order to satfor the feeling of national together- isfy claims of national identity, the ness and identity. respective notions of national expresArchitecture can also be used to dem- sion were often ‘given a helping hand’ onstrate national, political or dynas- both on restorations and reconstructic claims to power. Monuments and tions. Traditions and national symhistoric buildings therefore play a bols and imagery are in many cases special role in political calculations ‘inventions’ and this is reflected too and in the 19th century their preser- in a nation’s historic structures. vation became a task for the state. ‘Les longs souvenirs font des grands Reconstructing the symbols and peuples’ (Long memories create great images of a city peoples) was a saying of Charles de The memory of individuals and of soMontalembert, one of the fathers of ciety is limited in duration to the huFrench heritage preservation. It ac- man lifespan. Via symbolic media companied the country’s efforts to such as architecture and literature, Reconstruction for national preserve, restore and reconstruct his- however, a ‘cultural memory’ (Jan political and dynastic reasons toric buildings and monuments. Fol- and Aleida Assmann) is created with Buildings reach into the present day lowing the devastating destruction a reach that is no longer limited to the as a testimony to bygone times and in Poland, Jan Zachwatowicz de- memory of individuals, but matches

instead the longevity of the fixed, physical symbols. Buildings are therefore able to convey concepts over long periods of time that give people and groups a cultural identity. A city’s architecture is an essential part of the cultural memory, on which its residents base their consciousness of unity and character. The image and history of a city are often condensed into a few buildings that stand in to represent the whole. In the same way that the Colosseum, the Eiffel Tower and the Brandenburg Gate represent Rome, Paris and Berlin, most people associate their hometown with specific buildings, roads or squares. As important elements of cultural memory, such civic symbols are so integral to the residents’ identity and concept of who they are that in the event of these being lost there is generally a demand for their reconstruction. After the First World War, the most important buildings and squares of the destroyed cities in Belgium, northern France and East Prussia were therefore rebuilt in their original appearance with practically no discussion at all. Following the huge scale of destruction in the Second World War this did not happen in many cities, even though the majority of the public wanted such squares and buildings rebuilt. Even then Herbert von Einem was already warning: “What’s use is preservation to us if the natural cohesion that used to connect us with the testimony to former times can no longer be experienced.” Since the final third of the 20th century, with the emergence of a new generation the need has intensified in the midst of inhospitable urban spaces for the reconstruction of symbols of civic identity. The reconstructions in Hildesheim, Dresden, Frankfurt and Riga are an expression of the wish of a majority of the residents for public spaces to be designed as a means of preserving an area’s cultural memory.

Reconstructing buildings to remember people and events The most heated argument about reconstruction in Germany raged shortly after the Second World War over the question of rebuilding the fully destroyed house of Goethe’s birth in Frankfurt am Main. Modern architects and preservationists had almost made up their minds not to reconstruct it, but those in favour won the day and the reconstructed building was officially opened in 1951.

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The Royal Palace of Lithuania (Lower Castle) in Vilnius, reconstructed in 2008

Hundreds of thousands of people from all over the globe have since visited the house and the reconstruction has taken on the function of a memorial. The fact that it is a reproduction largely without any original elements is well known and any talk of it being a ‘fraud’ would be absurd. The human memory is ‘topological’, i.e. structured by place. Architecture is therefore particularly able to help us recall the past. If a building is lost, its reproduction too is able to take on this task of preserving memories of people or events. A new building in a modern design and using ‘contemporary’ materials would, on the other hand, not have been able – even in the same location – to convey any real idea of the house in which Goethe was born and spent his formative years to the generations to come. In order to remember people it has been customary since ancient times for the houses in which they were born, lived, worked and died to be preserved, restored and, where necessary, reconstructed. Millions make the pilgrimage to the house of Shakespeare’s birth in Stratford-upon-Avon, to Luther’s house in Eisleben, to Rubens’ house in Antwerp, to Abraham Lincoln’s log cabin in Illinois, to the house of Jeanne d’Arc in Orléans, to Robert Schumann’s house in Zwickau and to Henry Thoreau’s cabin on Walden Pond. For most visitors the fact that they are reconstructions does not matter. Historic forms can take us back into history even if they are not original. Reconstructions make it possible to get closer via architecture to people, their deeds and to historic events and they thus fulfil many general human needs and desires.

Archaeological econstructions It is part of an archaeologist’s work to put structures that have fallen into ruin back together again. If required for the construction, any missing elements get added in such a way that it is possible to distinguish the new parts from the historic. This approach, known as anastilosis, needs to be differentiated from ‘archaeological reconstructions’. These are not copies or reproductions – for exam-

ple, based on drawings or pictures – of buildings that no longer exist, but ‘inventions’ by the archaeologists based on their current knowledge. Usually the superstructures have to be designed hypothetically from the remnants of the foundations through comparison, analogy or the transfer of other findings. Even more than other forms of restoration archaeological reconstructions therefore reflect both the current status of relevant research and general artistic, historic and scientific views of the period in which they are undertaken. Every form of reconstruction – including restoration – is a product of its time. It is a construct of history

that can be dated again by future generations. By looking at the history of the reconstruction of early structures like pile dwellings and Stone Age settlements and also of Roman castles and fortifications, such as limes, the projection of contemporary ideas into archaeological reconstructions can be clearly traced. The way in which reproductions were identified as a reconstruction can also be retrospectively dated. While reconstructions in the 19th century, such as the Saalburg Roman fort, were still very much guided by educational interests, archaeological reproductions are increasingly developing into leisure parks aimed at tourists, serving commercial interests and visitors’ supposed wishes through dramatisations of every kind. One newer special form is ‘experimental archaeology’, where individuals using historic tools and in appropriate dress perform the Frankfurt /Main before World War II, Römerberg reconstructions in front of an audience. The production of ‘living history’ is frequently becoming a part of marketing strategies in the media for history and leisure.

Frankfurt/Main 1947 and 2002, Römerberg

Reconstruction as an adaptation of antiquity – from drawing to animation As interest in classical antiquity grew ever greater through the course of the 15th century, the period’s architectural remains also gained increasingly in importance. The topography and monuments

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of ancient Rome in particular were not only the subject of literary research by the Humanists, but the remains of buildings also served as a means of studying the ancient architecture, its structure, design and proportions. From the middle of the 15th century drawings were produced based on Roman ruins. These were not only often excavated and precisely measured, but also reconstructed in drawn form. The architects of the time thought that studying the historic buildings would help them to unscramble the rules of ancient architecture and thus open up the possibility not only of restoring the buildings but also of making practical use of this knowledge in a new form of ‘all’antica’ architecture. Alberti was already recommending in his architectural treatise of 1451 that historic buildings be drawn in plan and front view without any foreshortening through perspective in order to be able to record the works better and thus to utilise them for new designs. In a letter to Pope Leo X in 1519, Raphael proposed making an inventory of as many of Rome’s historic buildings as possible with the aim of restoring those “of which sufficient is still retained that they can be restored without doubt in the way that they must have been.” Over the course of subsequent centuries, there developed in dealings with the historical buildings of classical antiquity on the one hand an ever better knowledge of the structures and on the other an increasingly ‘more realistic’ form of presenting reconstructions. Based on scientific research and investigation of a building’s architectural history, painters and architects, whose training included reconstructing buildings in drawn form, produced clear plans, perspective views and paintings. Historical paintings and panoramas already seemed to provide a direct insight into classical antiquity and with the possibilities of film and most recently with computer simulation and animation the virtually reconstructed world of ancient times is becoming something that can be directly experienced.

Reconstructing to restore the unity of an ensemble or to regain a unique space During the Renaissance, Leon Battista Alberti defined beauty as a state to which no changes could be made and nothing added. The notion that all parts should merge to form a harmonious whole applied in many eras to architecture and urban construction as well. Whenever a section of building within an ensemble designed as an entity or historically mature was destroyed, such areas down the ages were frequently restored. The most famous example is the reconstruc-

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Warsaw’s Old Town after being blown up by the SS (left) and rebuilt immediately after the Second World War (right)

tion of the Campanile on St. Mark’s Square in Venice, which collapsed in 1902, and without which the whole square and surrounding area would have totally lost its look. In opposition to this restoration of continuity and conformity there were, however, repeated demands to place new buildings directly next to the old to form a contrast. As up until the end of the 19th century styles of architecture even across relatively long periods were interrelated and building methods, dimensions and materials remained relatively constant, this, nevertheless, rarely created such fractures as caused by modern architecture, which distanced itself from historic styles and sought a totally new form of expression with new materials and designs. In the post-1945 concept of ‘Neues Bauen in alter Umgebung’ (A new style of building in old surroundings) it is autonomy, originality and contrast that dominate, not unity and continuity. However, even within the Modernist movement there is a lot of evidence in the works of the likes of Álvaro Siza, Luigi Snozzi, Carlo Scarpa and Giorgio Grassi of architects integrating their designs into an ensemble and that to them restoring a historic situation is more important than creating a dramatic break with history. Where important interiors have been lost, especially in the case of theatre buildings, these were frequently reconstructed in order to regain proven spatial qualities or a much-loved atmosphere. Although most modern architects have a mindset opposed to reconstructions, there was seldom any discussion about the many copies of works by the classic exponents of Modernism. The regaining of exemplary models of one’s own genre is often judged differently to the reproduction of historical buildings.

Reconstructing ‘authentic spirit’ and ritual replication Western culture is defined by a linear perception of time. Time marches inexorably on and is irreversible. Therefore only ‘authentic’ historic buildings can remind us of bygone days. Original buildings reach back into history and for this reason are

highly valued. In cultures with a notion of cyclical time, of a continual recurrence of the same within the rhythm of daily and seasonal life and of cosmic or ruling cycles authentic buildings, by contrast, mean little. Of greater importance there are the location’s identity and the ability to preserve and pass on traditions within the cycle of events. While heritage preservation in the West is concerned with retaining original buildings as guarantors of memories of the past, the key factor for cultures with a cyclical view of time is passing on the ‘authentic spirit’ from one generation to the next. The physical struc-

St. Michael’s Monastery, Kiev – Reconstructed from 1989

ture can be lost, but ritual repetition is designed to guarantee eternal continuity. Location and ritual thus become the constant within the cycles of time. Ritually demolishing and constructing a building anew or replicating it is a familiar practice in many cultures with a cyclical concept of time. Through these repetitions man, who continues the tradition and passes it on, becomes the living part of higher orders. How closely the new building is based on its predecessor varies from culture to culture. In Japan, for example, the Isa Grand Shrine has for over 1,300 years been rebuilt with enormous effort every two decades based precisely on the example of the existing structure, which is then cleared away. The customary term for this process is ‘fukugen’, repetition of the original form. It is not the building that is alive, but the preservation and passing on of the authentic spirit. In many cultures of the Middle and Far

East there are countless reconstructed and replicated buildings. Within this cultural context to ask about there age or ‘originality’ is relatively meaningless.

Reconstruction for the leisure and consumer world A form of tourism based around historic buildings existed as far back as the 18th century, albeit then undertaken in the main by aristocrats visiting the sights on their ‘grand tour’. As the educated classes began travelling in the 19th century, increasing numbers of people visited historic sites in order to see and experience great buildings of the past for themselves. This was accompanied by a systematic pepping up of the buildings in order to convey memorable, visual images to the visitors. The mass tourism of the 20th and 21st centuries has seen the development not only of major, global tourist industries, but also of wholly new ways of marketing history. In many cases tourism brought great attention and thus financial assistance to historic sites. However, it also brought an increasing burden on the original structures and pressure to impart history to a lay public in an easily understandable way. As history is now often becoming staged, increasing numbers of new attractions, such as theme parks, trips through time, experimental archaeology or spectacular historic shows, are being invented. Within this context reconstructions are also being created that are frequently part of the ‘heritage crusade’ (David Lowenthal), i.e. of commercialisation strategies aimed at the tourist market. Some of these reconstructions have, however, since been added to the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites. In the maelstrom of purely commercial interests or tourism-based marketing reconstructions are reduced in many cases to superficial façades and become no more than tokenism. They then serve merely as a sales promotion element or are intended to distract attention from the fact that original historic buildings repeatedly get sacrificed to financial interests.

Reconstruction and the ‘honesty’ of Modernism In parallel with the ever better understanding of the historical development of building styles and as a form of compensation for the serious loss of architectural heritage due to industrialisation, historic buildings were in many cases reconstructed in the 19th century largely based on the notion that it was possible to ‘creatively’ capture how buildings used to be and then recreate them. John Ruskin, and subsequently the representatives of an emerging, scientifically oriented form of heritage preservation, described this style of ‘restoration’ as a ‘lie’ or a ‘falsification’ compared to the established original. As Modernist architecture developed in the late 1900s, all of the historicising architecture of the outgoing century was disparagingly viewed as eclectic and thus uncreative and the recourse to historic forms discredited as a disguise, a falsehood and an inability to design anything based on the present. The notion that architecture has to map and express function and design directly and that the architect must design in a ‘contemporary’ style and may not orient himself on history led to Modernism’s ideology of ‘honesty’: if any intervention is to be made into a historic structure, this has to be identifiable as a contemporary modification. The implementation of such ‘honesty’ led to some brilliant designs, in which the layers of history are artistically displayed. However, it also led to totally bizarre demonstrations of a distancing from any historic form. This ideology also found its way into the ‘Venice Charter’ issued in 1964, in which the Western heritage preservation sector aligned itself with modern architects’ concept of honesty. The notions of ‘truth’ and ‘honesty’ that were formulated by Modernism as a response to the ‘lies’ of Historicism are based on a supposed knowledge of what is ‘contemporary’ and ‘in keeping with the time’. However, the spectrum of contemporary architecture also includes reproductions, for reconstruction too is a part of present-day building activity.

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Learning from the Koreans:

South Korea rebuilds Changgyeong Palace in Seoul

The royal palace’s Honghwamun main gate c. 1900

Governor’s palace with attempt at rebuilding the gate in concrete c. 1990

Demolition of the governor’s palace in 1995

Preparations for the new, authentic reconstruction of the main gate

Virtual view of the royal palace’s central complex

South Korea is currently going through an many discussions with art historians and incredible economic boom. While after dec- heritage preservation specialists, which I ades of Japanese occupation and the Korean was able to have thanks to introductions and War, the even now still divided country was great preparatory work from the German one of the poorest and most backward on Embassy, it became apparent that the reconearth until well into the 1960s, South Korea struction of the royal palace is seen as a great has since become one of the most prosperous national project and is being unreservedly in just 40 years. It ranks 15th in the world backed by the public. The sentiment there is and, as if it was the most natural thing ever, is definitely comparable to the sentiment in hosting the G20 summit this autumn. After Poland during the reconstruction of Warsaw. hundreds of years as a monarchy, the coun- The people there simply cannot understand try has been a stable democracy since the the endless debates in Germany over whether we do or do not have the right to reconmiddle of the last century. Two things have probably played a key part struct such buildings. They see such arguments as purely ideological. Lucky Korea! in this success: the creativity, hard work and discipline of its Wilhelm von Boddien people and their deeply rooted attachment to the country’s traditions. It is second nature there to deal with the country’s long history in a positive way. Korea was a kingdom of the Joseon Dynasty for five centuries up until 1910, when the Japanese occupation signalled its end. The royal palace is the largest palace complex in Seoul and is able to convey an inkling of the early days of the Korean dynasties. However, in its current form the palace can only give a vague impression of how it looked in earlier times. During the Japanese occupation nearly all of the 330 buildings were destroyed or The Honghwamun main gate after reconstruction in 2010 moved. However, the Gyeonghoeru Pavilion, supported by 48 pillars, and the imposing Genjeongjeon building undoubtedly convey an idea of the magnificent state in which the palace once existed. You must not think of this old royal palace as being like any palace in Europe. It was made up of various large and small temple-like pavilions that accommodated the king, his family and the entire royal household, similar to the complexes in the ‘ForbidThe Honghwamun main gate: detail beneath the roof den City’ in Peking. It was just 20 years ago, in 1990, that the Korean government resolved to restore the complex to its original condition. Two years earlier, in 1988, the main Heunghwamun gate, which the Japanese had moved to another location in Seoul in order to build the governor’s palace, had been moved back into place. The governor’s palace was demolished in the 1990s and, but for a few still missing buildings, the royal palace was reconstructed in minute detail. As we were able to see for ourselves on a visit to Seoul in September Visit to Seoul: Wilhelm von Boddien (left), Park Yung-Keun, 2010, the country’s heritage preser- Director of the Royal Palace, Dr. Hans-Ulrich Seidt, vation community is also whole- German Ambassador, Kim Won-Ki, General Director of the heartedly behind the project. In Cultural Heritage Administration of Korea

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The Humboldt Forum – Palatial gateway to the world by Prof. Dr. Hermann Parzinger, President of Stiftung Preußischer Kulturbesitz (Prussian Culture Heritage Foundation)

Crowds gather for a summer concert in Berlin’s Lustgarten

Culture shapes major cities Now that there is nothing more to stand in the way of the Humboldt Forum being built within the framework of Berlin Palace, an increasing number of dissenting voices have been heard recently in various media outlets questioning the proposed use of the Forum, which, like its creation, was also passed by resolution of the German government. The plans lack a ‘big idea’, they say. This view can only be based on ignorance, though it has to be admitted that the proposals could also evidently have been communicated better. Between now and its opening in 2018, the Humboldt Forum will be going through a process of ongoing intellectual development and design around what is already a visible core. The tasks associated with the construction of the Humboldt Forum in terms of the material to be

conveyed and the concepts to be developed are very complex. However, it is already possible to formulate its central message, which represents the core guiding principles. Professor Hermann Parzinger, the President of the Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation, is currently leading work on producing a brochure that will comprehensively describe the Humboldt Forum in respect of its diverse roles, opportunities, educational offerings and exhibitions. This will be published in a large print-run in the autumn and then distributed to key opinion-formers at all levels of society, to interested members of the general public and, of course, to the media. Here in advance of this are a few thoughts from the contents of the brochure that appear to us to be of key significance:

With the Humboldt Forum acting as a site of world culture, Berlin will within a few years possess a cultural centre of national and international aura. We can see around the globe how cultural projects – realised with great flair and considerable financial effort – give a boost to major cities’ world renown and even have the effect of defining national selfperception and identity. It is, indeed, often museums that play a particular role in this. The strategy here of-

art and culture, formed the final such development to date in the French capital. In Madrid, the Prado’s new entrance and extension gave it a new significance, while by roofing over its inner courtyard and utilising the space in a very modern way the British Museum in London created a totally different museum feel. Here too non-European exhibits are now consciously juxtaposed with early European and the Middle Eastern art.

Eremitage St. Petersburg

ten lies in a strongly symbolic combination of cultural heritage and forward-looking concepts. Such projects find their effective expression in grand architectural gestures. Paris began this process way back in the 1980s with the glass pyramids in the courtyard of the Louvre acting both as a new source of light and enlarged entrance, while the Musée du Quai Branly, opened in 2006 as an outstanding centre of non-European

Grand Louvre Paris

Also in countries that have experienced perpetual political upheaval and the dawning of new eras, major cultural projects are playing a key role in defining how they see themselves. In St. Petersburg, for example, the Hermitage’s master plan for 2014 provides for modern museum strategies and methods of presentation. The Pushkin Museum in Moscow is also getting itself fit for the 21st century with the creation of an outstanding cultural complex featuring an ad-

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Photographer: Peter Sondermann, Berlin, Förderverein Berliner Schloss, eldaco, Berlin

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Museum Island with Berlin Palace: a centre of world cultures, art and science in the heart of the city

ditional gallery, library and concert hall, which will be on a par with any of the great museums of the world. In Peking the National Museum is undergoing an impressive extension that will make it the world’s largest museum building, while hundreds of other museums are being built all across the country. In the Gulf a prosperous society is trying with the help of futuristic museum architecture and imported museum know-how to create a cultural basis combined with a desire for a modern world view. All of these examples show just one thing: global cities blossom and develop an absolutely magical magnetic draw when at their very heart they live and breathe culture. Nothing defines a country’s image in the world more powerfully than its cultural centres.

Musée du quai Branly Paris

Berlin’s opportunities are unique The welcome reunification of the city after decades of division creates a great opportunity to reshape the historic heart of Berlin in a style that picks up on Prussia’s cultural achievements in the 19th century. It was here over many centuries that the outstanding cultural and artistic treasures of Western tradition were collected together and from here that academic curiosity honed in on the alien and different in the world. The challenge now is to refine this urbane core into an intellectual centre that will have a defining impact on Berlin. Following German reunification, the immense complex of collections of art and culture from Europe and the Middle East on Berlin’s Museum Island received a veritable boost in public perception through the coming

together of the divided museum inventories and the renovation and further extension of the buildings as part of the Museum Island master plan. And it is a perception that gets ever more firmly rooted with each passing year. The Humboldt Forum in the now to be partially reconstructed Berlin Palace on the other side of the Pleasure Gardens (Lustgarten) will create an outstanding centre for the art and culture of Asia, Africa, America, Australia and Oceania. With this composition of buildings Berlin will become one of the leading cultural and museum cities anywhere in the world. This is possible because only Berlin combines this wealth of collections from around the globe within one museum institution: the State Museums of the

National Museum Beijing

Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation. And only in Berlin, with the Museum Island and Humboldt Forum, can such an impressive and meaningful centre of world cultures be created, because here – as a result of the conflicting ideologies of a fateful history – the space required still exists right in the heart of a major global city. What is even more important, however, is that in doing so we are showing our country’s intellectual willingness to shape the geographical centrepiece of our capital not in a self-focussed way but in a style that stands for healthy curiosity and openness towards other cultures. Equally this place will also be able to contribute towards the process of self-affirmation in a globally interconnected world.

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Fragment of a sermon scene Asian Art Museum, Berlin State Museums, Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation

Persian court lady Asian Art Museum, Berlin State Museums, Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation

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God Shiva and family Asian Art Museum, Berlin State Museums, Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation

World Heritage Site cements Berlin’s reputation as a capital of culture

The Humboldt Forum creates a place of reflection in a globally integrated world

Museum Island was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in the year 2000. Its museums house examples of European and Middle Eastern culture and art from ancient times through to the 19th century. Following refurbishment, the high temple of art, the Old National Gallery (Alte Nationalgalerie) was reopened in its former glory in 2001. Five years later, the neo-Renaissance Bode Museum was reborn in wonderful style. This ensemble was then added to in 2009, when after decades as a ruin the New Museum (Neue Museum) rose like a phoenix from the ashes. Fascinating people ever since, the New Museum tells three stories at once: the history of the building, the history of museum presentation and the history of the exhibits on display there. If you compare the buildings with each other, then you appreciate that no two are alike. Each has its own history. It is precisely this diversity that fascinates visitors from all over the world. Currently taking shape, the new entrance building, the James Simon

The Humboldt Forum within Berlin Palace brings with it a unique opportunity not only to shape this capital city site of great historic importance, city planning significance and international allure in a public, high quality fashion, but also to give it a fascinating purpose: the cultures of the world will in a sense become stakeholders in the most distinguished location in Germany. Berlin and the whole country are thus able to take on a challenge of international significance in an extremely effective way. There is probably no other city that possesses such genuine credentials for doing this – credentials linked to name Humboldt. The Humboldt Forum in Berlin Palace will become a new kind of centre for experiencing art and culture. Its name is a reference to the legacy of brothers Wilhelm and Alexander von Humboldt, who at the start of the 19th century did groundbreaking work in researching foreign cultures and thus for global understanding. In becoming this new centre, the Humboldt Forum will not only add Berlin’s unique nonEuropean collections to the artistic and cultural treasures already brought together on Museum Island, but will also innovatively combine the institutions of museum, library and university, thus creating links between the historic col-

Gallery, epitomises the Museum Island’s ongoing development in the 21st century. It will accommodate space for special exhibitions and other functions that is lacking in the other buildings, yet is urgently needed. The entrance building will lead from the south into the Pergamon Museum, which as part of its refurbishment is to get a fourth wing along the ‘Kupfergraben’ cut and will thus offer a globally unique continuous walkway through the architectural history of antiquity from Ancient Egypt, the Ancient Near East and the Greco-Roman world all the way to Egypt’s early Islamic era. The Museum Island master plan ultimately concludes with completion of what is known as the Archaeological Promenade: this will link the museum’s courtyards, sunk one level deeper as part of the renovation, via a series of underground galleries. This will thus create an extended, interdisciplinary exhibition space that will tackle issues spanning geography and time with changing exhibits and content.


lections and the burning questions of today. The Humboldt Forum will provide an experience of non-European art and culture, thus imparting knowledge about the world, and will facilitate intercultural encounters, thus arousing curiosity and generating a fascination for other worlds. Finding sustainable ways of dealing with the alien and the different is a matter of survival for the cultures of the world, which in an era of globalisation are coming face-to-face with each other with unprecedented plurality, speed and complexity. Understanding cultural diversity and being prepared to enter into a dialogue are important prerequisites for shaping our future. The Humboldt Forum is essential because Germany in particular needs a place for exchanging views, objectives and experiences with cultures and societies of different kinds. The centre of the German capital offers in the shape of the Humboldt Forum a place the like of which does not yet exist anywhere else in the world. The Humboldt Forum is therefore not just something for Berlin and Germany, but can also become a treasure for the entire world – the Humboldt Forum can become a world centre of globalisation!

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Representation of Buddha Asian Art Museum

Past contained within the future The transformation of what was once the Hohenzollern palace into a place of world art and culture and its dialogue with the sciences has a certain inner logic: it could almost be called a belated transformation of Prussia and the revitalisation of its museums and scientific and educational institutions for the benefit of

the future of reunified Germany. It is in effect Prussia’s great achievement that will form the core of the Humboldt Forum: its wealth of nonEuropean art and culture encyclopaedically compiled against the background of its educational ideals.

The notion of the Humboldt Forum is closely tied to the history of the location The concept of the Humboldt Forum has developed from the location’s history and gains particular legitimacy from this: museums, library and university collections

had their common nucleus in the palace’s Brandenburg-Prussian chambers of art and curiosities. They are now returning to the place of their origin.

King Friedrich Wilhelm IV’s tea salon in Berlin Palace Design: Karl Friedrich Schinkel

The concept embodies the cosmopolitan Humboldt world view

Representations of Buddha, Asian Art Museum, Berlin State Museums, Gandhara, 1st century AD © Berlin State Museums. Photographer: Jürgen Liepe

The joint forum of museums, library and university bears the name Humboldt because the brothers Wilhelm and Alexander von Humboldt are not only closely associated with this location, but are also seen as guiding figures in the Humboldt Forum’s concept: Wilhelm stands for the importance of the classical history of European ideas and thought, for the understanding of non-European cultures, the significance of language in comprehending art and culture, the bringing together of museum, university and library and for a far-reaching educational policy offensive. Alexander symbolises curiosity for the world, an open-minded description of foreign cultures, cross-disciplinary exploration and research of America and Asia and the concept of an inseparable unity of nature and

culture. Indeed, Berlin Palace is one of the places where Alexander von Humboldt was able to present and debate these ideas, as King Friedrich Wilhelm IV regularly invited him, along with academics Leopold von Ranke, Friedrich Wilhelm Schelling, Barthold Georg Niebuhr and architect Karl Friedrich Schinkel, to gatherings in the palace’s tea salon. Both Wilhelm and Alexander were shaped by a cosmopolitan world view that was based on the equality of world cultures. They stand for enlightenment and an inquisitive interest in that which is different and alien in the world. What two hundred years ago was just a model, supported by a few individuals, is what we can bring to concrete fruition in the heart of Berlin today.

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Imperial throne Asian Art Museum, Berlin State Museums, Qing Dynasty, China, 17th century © Berlin State Museums. Photographer: Jürgen Liepe

Museums, library and university jointly shape the Humboldt Forum

Three institutions will design the Humboldt Forum: the Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation, Berlin Humboldt University and Berlin Central and State Library. The largest area will be taken by the Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation. This will be used for its Berlin State Museums’ non-European collections, which are currently still split between the Ethnological Museum and the Museum of Asiatic Art in the outlying Dahlem suburb. These collections cover well over 500,000 artefacts and works of art from every continent, supplemented by unique audio and video material. Together they form one of the richest portfolios of non-European art and culture anywhere in the world. Berlin Central and State Library offers a comprehensive range of services. It uses diverse forms of media for its attractive core areas of dance, drama, film, art and music and provides a modern

teaching library for children and young adults. Based on its copious university collections, the third partner, Berlin Humboldt University, is planning a ‘Humboldt Lab’ with regularly changing exhibitions and events. The Humboldt Forum is drawing on the idea of the Centre Pompidou with its combination of public library, exhibition areas and events centre and developing this further for the needs and requirements of a globalised world in the 21st century. As part of an integrated concept of how the Forum will be used, museums, library and university will pool their strengths and differing areas of expertise, creating a living space, generating and imparting knowledge on the cultures of the world. Continuing in the spirit of the von Humboldt brothers, the Humboldt Forum will bring the entire world into view.

The non-European collections must return to the heart of Berlin The Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation’s non-European collections, split between its Ethnological Museum and the Museum of Asiatic Art, have been housed since the Second World War in Dahlem on the south-western periphery of Berlin. Other important collections, such as the paintings of the ‘Gemäldegalerie’, the graphic art of the ‘Kupferstichkabinett’, the sculpture collection and the Museum of Islamic Art moved out of Dahlem into new premises or to their old locations in the centre of Berlin. Left in Dahlem was a – poorly visited – body of non-European art and culture, which was now robbed of any juxtaposition with the art and culture of Europe and the Middle East. This unity needs to be restored! By moving out of Dahlem into the centre of Berlin and regaining their proximity to Museum Island, the non-European collections will be coming back into an ensemble where they will finally lose the disparaging stigma of just being exotic. That too is part of any equitable presentation and perception of world cultures. Indeed, the Louvre now also displays its gallery of masterpieces of non-European art and everyone there is proud of having overcome world art hierarchies. The British Museum in London now also puts great store in the juxtaposition of the European and non-European. The great universal museums are thus taking into account their visitors’ demands. It is abundantly clear: today’s museum-goers and people with an interest in culture have long since been thinking in global dimensions.

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Exhibition of European Expressionist painting and ancient African art Ethnological Museum: Sculpture of a dignitary from the grassland of Cameroon, c. 1700

Europe’s modern era: inspired by non-European art and culture Contemporary visual art in the 21st century is global, embedded in widereaching networks that have an increasingly strong influence on each other. Yet the roots of this interaction go back much farther: the modern era’s great epoch-making change at the start of the 20th century was triggered in large part by the sustained influence of art from overseas. Artists such as Pablo Picasso and Ernst Ludwig Kirchner discovered in the collec-

tions of the ethnology museums totally new sources of inspiration and expressive energy, which resulted in a fundamental transformation in their creative work and heralded a new era of art. Sculptures from Africa and Oceania played a particularly key role in this and non-European influences are clear to see in the works of many major artists of the modern era. They opened our eyes to the aesthetic dimension of this foreign art.

World art in Berlin Former French President Jacques Chirac hit the nail on the head when he said in 1995 that the Louvre could not remain a really great museum if it continued to ignore the art of 70 percent of the world’s population. The outstanding quality of the Prus-

sian Cultural Heritage – Berlin State Museums’ non-European collections particularly underlines this statement. They include masterpieces of world art from every continent with an incredibly impressive aesthetic effect.

The Humboldt Forum will enable world cultures to be perceived in a new way The Humboldt Forum will be fundamentally different from a traditional ethnology museum and will be split into three core components: the Agora, the Workshops of Knowledge and the exhibition areas. The Agora on the ground floor is the starting point that will attune the visitors to the diversity of world cultures and their manifestations and bring them into initial contact with these.

A multi-purpose room and auditorium are envisaged here for performances and theatrical, musical and film events. Traditional and experimental theatre from all over the world will bring popular traditions of dramatic art to life, making them understandable to a broad public. A music stage will be able to bring the sounds of every continent into the heart of Berlin and thus establish in-

terconnections between traditional bodies of music and present day movements. Special exhibition areas will enable visitors to experience the latest developments in modern art from Africa, America and Asia, and, like seismographs, will thus show social trends. Indeed, the Humboldt Forum must be not just a place for the historic but for the contemporary as well! This makes the Agora – including in its role as a place of contemplation and reflection – an integral part of our presentation of world cultures. As a forum for the academic sciences, culture and politics, the Agora will also become a place of the spoken word,

where topical social policy themes will be publicly debated by high-calibre panels of selected experts. The Agora will form the heart of the Humboldt Forum and at the same time define its beat. The respective core areas, operated autonomously by the institutions concerned, will also be permeated by a dense network of common initiatives, which will unfold in the attractive and vibrant events space of the Agora and radiate into the exhibition areas of the floors above. In this way the Forum will be able to create links from the museums’ historic collections to the issues of the present day and vice versa.

New opportunities for cultural and intercultural learning The three partners within the Humboldt Forum will be collaborating very closely on cultural education and the imparting of knowledge. It is hoped that children and young adults in particular will be introduced to art and culture here in a special way and that through the teaching of information skills they will be enabled to gain new insights on their own. By having cultural, educational and research institutions working together, plus a supporting programme of events (in a pupil academy / lab) within the Humboldt

Forum, it will thus be possible to put over the special aspects of the cultures of Africa, America, Asia, Australia and Oceania in relation to their interaction with Europe. This will be done with a variety of different emphases and utilising all the media of written and visual culture, theatre, music and film. In the Humboldt Forum knowledge will be made available in the most comprehensive and modern of ways. From this knowledge will grow understanding and a willingness to be at one with the cultures of the world.

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Asian Art Museum, Berlin State Museums. Photographer: Jürgen Liepe

The Humboldt Forum will highlight continental diversity

The Humboldt Forum as a vision for the 21st century

In the exhibition areas visitors will be able to go on a journey around the world that will open up to them new ways of understanding cultural interrelationships and artistic trends. The aim is that each continent will gain here in profile in respect of the wealth of visual, acoustic and sensual experiences it provides. Our objective here is

If Berlin’s Museum Island as a ‘sanctuary for art and science’ featuring the art and culture of Europe and the Middle East was the great vision of the 19th century, then the Humboldt Forum in Berlin Palace is the further development of this vision at the start of the 21st century. We are thus setting ourselves the task of reacting in appropriate fashion to the requirements of a globalised world. That Germany is accepting this challenge at its most distinguished location in the historic centre of its capital city is a very special gesture. The challenge is to create here a new form of access to the cultures of the world that will not be a purely museum-like centre, but that will also be able to build links between the past and the pressing topics and issues of our time. In the interplay

not to produce a traditional, permanent exhibition, but rather an open, porous, transformable structure that picks up on the diversity, changes, opportunities and risks of our time, discerningly reflects the collections’ contemporary references and makes underlying mechanisms of man’s actions understandable from an historic perspective.

Understanding historic processes to carry out modern causal research One element playing an important role in the Humboldt Forum will be special exhibitions devoted to the core issues of our time: globalisation, migration, climate change, megacities and many more. Many of the issues and problems that occupy our world today are by no means new. Migration, for example, is no present-day phenomenon, but has been a factor accompanying the course of man’s entire history. The consequences of this

range from so-called multicultural societies all the way to processes of population overlay. The same applies to the diverse causes and economic, political and social effects of climate change. Megacities, too, are not solely a feature of our time. With the help of the non-European collections we will be able in the Humboldt Forum to tell these stories in an extraordinarily vivid way, to explain historic processes and to demonstrate their causes.

with Museum Island the equal status of the world’s cultures will be made visible and visitors will be able to experience the cultural and artistic aspects of man’s history in a totally new way. It is on fertile soil such as this that knowledge of the world grows. Knowledge and education are the decisive keys to respect and tolerance towards foreign cultures, without which it is impossible for the peoples of the world to live together in peace. And this too is the extraordinarily human message behind the

Humboldt Forum’s grand projet. We are thus referencing here – in effect taking recourse to the best of Prussia – our great tradition as a nation of knowledge and culture and are developing from this a new vision for the future. The Humboldt Forum brings with it a great opportunity to develop from these traditions a new chapter in the integration of our country into the community of the peoples of the world. We must not waste this opportunity!

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Exhibition design in the Berlin Humboldt Forum by Barbara Holzer The historical Berliner Schloss is being rebuilt in the centre of the German capital and precisely reconstructed to a great extent. The project was acontentious issue among the population and experts alike. Thus the quality of the material exhibited in the spacious rooms of the future Humboldt Forum, which is conceived as a cosmopolitan forum for social and cultural exchange, is all the more essential. It is based on the idea of pooling a wide range of material from different cultures around the world to encourage artistic and academic dialogue in the centre of Berlin. The Ethnological Museum and the Museum of Asian Art in the Berlin districtof Dahlem will therefore be based in the Humboldt Forum in the future. It is intended as a special place for the art and culture of Asia, Africa, America, Australia and Oceania. In 2010, an open competition throughout Europe was announced with the aim of developing the exhibition architecture for both museums. In view of the controversy concerning the Stadtschloss, the exhibition architecture and the presentation of the exceptional collections assumes the

complex task of achieving a coherent connection between the building shell and its content. The open competition process allowed a wide range of different design offices to take part. Hence it was impossible to predict the number and quality of the entered concepts. Since the design task was for a very large, extremely prestigious museum space, both a high degree of design quality and a recognisable development potential were decisive for the entered work. So the competition jury recommended an additional assessment round with a reduced number of competition participants. Four teams were chosen from among the 16 entries to develop their design further in a negotiation process in which the identity of those shortlisted was made public. It was good and important that all participants followed that recommendation, because the competition winners will face a challenging task: The large, extensive collections with numerous significant exhibits must be accommodated in rooms that were not originally conceived for the purpose of presenting exhibits. The architecture of the largely reconstruct-

ed Stadtschloss is designed symmetrically, resulting in strict, uniform spatial proportions. The floor plan organisation follows a serial, repetitive system. Around 17,500 m2 of the total 41,000 m2 of usable space have been allocated to the two museums’ exhibitions on the second and third floors. Not only the size of the exhibitions, but also the factor of time will be a challenge. The yearsof intensive collaboration between exhibition architects, museum representatives, academia and other participating institutions and authorities require a high level of professionalism and considerable resilience. Ideas and approaches to design must bear up to the extremely long expected planning period of seven years and yet be able to develop further. In the second round of the selection process, the design by Ralph Appelbaum Associates and malsyteufel was chosen. We were especially impressed by the American-German team’s diverse approaches to design. Both partners also have the necessary experience and references for a project of this size and period. Ralph Appelbaum Associates is a globally opera-

tive office based in New York, London and Beijing. Like malsyteufel, which was founded by Prof. Victor Malsy and Prof. Philipp Teufel, the practice has twenty years of successful experience in exhibition design. The presented design highlights the team’s ability to effectively combine different professional competences while expressing an individual character. The design concept highlights and strengthens the intention and potential of the Humboldt Forum. The scenographers apply the Humboldts’ philosophy to the present and the future, thereby stressing its relevance today. Wilhelm and Alexander von Humboldt valued dialogue in their important intellectual undertakings: exchange – a movement between intellectual life and the outside world. Both brothers tapped new cultural horizons by expanding their knowledge through linguistic studies and education, as well as investigation and scientific research. Another impressive aspect of the entry was its precise analysis of the Stadtschloss architecture. With the aim of achieving unity through diversity, Ralph Appelbaum Associates and malsyteufel created

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sensible relationships between space and content. Their simple, flexible and adaptable exhibition architecture represents an exciting contrast to the reconstructed building. The scenographers also use a Humboldt-quote as the motto for their exhibition presentation: “We step out of the realm of objects and into the realm of impressions.” They use emotionally appealing, physically tangible and largescale presentations. They pick up on the atmospheric appearances of the two existing museums in Dahlem and interpret and present them in a special form for the new location in the Stadtschloss. The design thereby achieves a plausible evolution to present the Dahlem collections. The designers provide specific, yet mutually connected, coherent solutions for both the Ethnological Museum and the Museum of Asian Art. Their conceptual approach fulfils the high standards for the forwardlooking handling of historical collections. They take the requirements of the curators responsible for the content into account, as well as those of the visitors with varying prior insight and horizons. As a member of the competition jury, I consider the final result to be very positive. I am convinced that the most suitable applicant was chosen. The work radiates the successful competence and experience necessary to master a planned task of such immense scale and complexity.

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This aspect should not be over- Stadtschloss reconstruction, making boldt Forum always worth a visit in looked, since the choice of the exhi- the future exhibition in the Hum- the heart of Berlin. bition designers for a task of this size means years of intensive collabTender invitation: Stiftung Berlin- ta Brockmann, Köln; one prize: oration. It is therefore important er Schloss – Humboldt Forum | Cli- Mila – Jakob Tigges, Berlin; Iglhaut that the project is handled with a ent: Stiftung Berliner Schloss – + von Grote, Berlin; one prize: merz consistent approach and a design Humboldt Forum | represented by: sauter zimmermann GmbH, Stutthallmark that is apparent throughBundesamt für Bauwesen und Rau- gart; one prize: raumkontor Inneout all of the exhibition spaces. mordnung, Referat A 2, Beate Hück- narchitektur, Düsseldorf; Dr. Karl The project may benefit from the fact elheim-Kaune, Philipp Dittrich; Müller, Meerbusch that the chosen team has a fresh outReferat IV 1, Volker Grübener, Ines sider’s view resulting from internaMiersch-Süß – till may 2011, Danie- Negotiation process with revitional cooperation. The design shows la Ramdani, Nina Wengatz – since sion of prize-winning competithat they are able to free themselves september 2011 | user: Staatliche tion designs: Advice committee: from the controversial debate on the Museen zu Berlin, Ethnologisches Dr. Stephan Trüby, Stuttgart/ Stadtschloss and regard the strict arMuseum und Museum für Asi- Zürich; Prof. Barbara Holzer, chitecture as a challenge. Well-preatische Kunst | Site: Berliner Schloss Zürich; Prof. Dr. Viola König, SMB sented content creates a coherent uni– Humboldt Forum – Ethnologisches Museum; Prof. ty of inner and outer elements, thereDr. Klaas Ruitenbeek, SMB – Museby strengthening acceptance of the Interdisciplinary open competi- um für Asiatische Kunst; Jette Sandisputed Stadtschloss building. tion: jury: expert jurors: Prof. Bar- dahl, Kopenhagen; Astrid BornheRalph Appelbaum Associates and bara Holzer, Zürich; Martin Heller, im, Berlin; Martin Heller, Zürich; malsyteufel have above all shown Zürich; Bernd Hoge, Paris; Dr. Al- Dan Rahimi, Toronto; Monika through their exact analytical apbert Lutz, Zürich; Prof. Uwe J. Rein- Zessnik, SMB; Dr. Peter Junge, SMB proach that they have the required hardt, Stuttgart; Jette Sandahl, Ko- - EM; Raffael Gadebusch, SMB grasp of the complex, large-scale arpenhagen | jurors representing the AKU | Contracted on: Ralph Appelchitecture of the Stadtschloss. The client: Dr. Sigrid Bias-Engels, BKM; baum Associates, New York/Lonrepetitive room structure cannot be Günter Hoffmann, BMVBS; Man- don; malsyteufel, Willich | start of perceived as an exhibition space at fred Rettig, speaker SBS-HF; Prof. project design: 04/2012 | start of first glance. They have also underDr. Hermann Parzinger, president construction: 09/2016 – complestood the idea of the Humboldt FoSPK; Prof. Dr. Michael Eissenhauer, tion: 02/2019 | Areas: Ethnologisrum in pursuing a global aim, namegeneral director SMB ches Museum ca. 10.000 m2 | Musely to present a distillation of cultures um für Asiatische Kunst ca. 5.000 and international cultural history. 16 participants in the open com- m2 | Other exhibition space: ca. I am convinced that Ralph Appelpetition: prizes: one prize: Ralph 3.000 m2 | Total exhibition space: baum Associates and malsyteufel Appelbaum Associates, New York/ ca. 18.000 m2 | total costs: 32 Mio. will make a significant contribution London; malsyteufel, Willich; Ani- Euro towards increasing public acceptance of the controversial

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Laying of the Humboldt Forum cornerstone on 12th June 2013 Speech by Hermann Parzinger

What a day! What great weather! You almost want to say: God is on our side! You could also call it the weather fit for a Kaiser! Today is a wonderful day for everyone assembled here. The gong that you just heard is more than a little symbolic, as this gong, ladies and gentlemen, is the first item that we have purchased new for the future Humboldt Forum. And the special thing about it is that the artist from Java has been living and working in Berlin for 25 years and, as you will see after my speech, interacts intensively with musicians from the city. The world is here in Berlin, ladies and gentlemen, and has been for many years. It is now high time that we had a facility like the Humboldt Forum. Berlin needs such a place!

would like to welcome here both Jan-Hendrik Olbertz and Volker Heller. We have a shared vision and it means realising what the name implies. Naturally, one thinks here of Alexander von Humboldt, the great explorer of foreign worlds, the discoverer of Latin America, the researcher of Central Asia, but one must think too of Wilhelm von Humboldt. While we associate him more with Museum Island, we forget too easily that he made important contributions to the development of language in South East Asia and in the Pacific region. And on a day like today, when something is being created where university, museum and library will later interact in a very special and new way, an academic administrator like Wilhelm von Humboldt would certainly have And we are taking the name ‚Hum- also been pleased. boldt Forum‘ very seriously. The name says it all and this ‚all‘ will be The interesting thing is that what is supported just as much by the Prus- being created in this Humboldt Fosian Cultural Heritage Foundation rum is not something that is coming and its Berlin State Museums as by together quasi by chance, but is our partners, the Berlin Humboldt made up of three institutions that University and the Berlin Central have their origins in the chamber of and State Library, and therefore I curiosities in the historic palace. Be-

fore, with the erection of the Altes Museum, Neues Museum and the other buildings on Museum Island this wonderful place, this UNESCO World Heritage site, was created, all of these collections were found in Berlin Palace. There is an engraving from Schinkel‘s era, which shows the rooms in the Spree Wing, in which the ethnological collections were housed. Berlin‘s first public library was also established inside the palace. And it was the location where - and here one merely has to mention Leibniz here - the chamber of curiosities‘ science history collections, which are today in Humboldt University, were brought together. When in the future you enter this Humboldt Forum through the Eosander Portal, the main access, you will find yourself inside an impressive entrance hall. There inside different recesses installations stretching over several storeys will bring to life what the chamber of curiosities means in respect of intellectual and scientific history for us and for Europe. The visitor will then right from the outset grasp through a grand gesture why the Humboldt

Forum has a legitimate reason to be precisely in this location and why it has its roots here. I would like here also to consciously mention Leibniz with his theatrum naturae et artis, this playful linking together of science and art with the aim of educating and informing. That is ultimately also what is intended to happen on the ground floor - occasionally also called the Agora. Within the multifunctional spaces visitors will be able to experience the whole diversity of cultural forms of expression: film, music, performance, visual art, podium discussions and much more besides. From here the bridge will be created between the historic collections and the issues of the present and future. From here the special exhibitions will then extend up onto the first floor. The Humboldt University will operate there its ‚Humboldt Lab‘, an event zone, in which the work of modern science with all its boundaries, contradictions and controversies will be presented in an understandable way. Berlin Central and State Library will on the first floor

66 The Berliner Schloss Post not simply make books available, but devote itself in the manner of a science centre to a ‚World of Languages‘ theme. The Prussian Cultural Heritage – Berlin State Museums will among other exhibits present there its phonogram archive, itself a world heritage collection, which links in both with the Humboldt University‘s sound archive and the State Library‘s language theme. I could add a lot more about how the institutions will interlink and thus address the shared task of how the Humboldt Forum can have an effect extending out into our society. It is also on the first floor that the State Museums begin their presentation, which then draws visitors up to the second and third levels. With their fantastic collections they offer a journey around the world. Neil MacGregor made this very clear in his statement. It was the former French president, Jacques Chirac, who in 2006 at the opening of the Musée du Quai Branly, the museum of non-European art and culture in Paris, said that a museum such as the Louvre had no long-term future, if we ignore art and culture of 70 per cent of the earth‘s population. It can‘t be put any better. The British Museum integrated ethnological collections many years ago. The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York naturally also has a gallery dedicated to African art and to art of the South Seas. Asia is also represented. Here in the heart of Berlin, however, with Museum Island and the Humboldt Forum this vision can be realised once again in a completely different dimension, and that is the great opportunity!

N e w sN e w s viction that this is the key point. We were also told to look at Africa not just through the perspective of Colonialism, because Africa had a history before and after Colonialism as well. Taking this approach, the Humboldt Forum can develop an enormous integrative power. Once again: the world has long been in Berlin and the task is to give everyone here a place that they too perceive as a cultural centre. Museum Island with its outstanding collections relating to Europe‘s art and culture, with its roots in the Middle East was the great vision of the 19th century. In the Humboldt Forum art and culture of Africa, Asia, Australia, Oceania and America will be represented using no less fantastic collections. This constellation is unique and this interplay on such a scale can be produced only in Berlin, as Neil MacGregor rightly stressed. Precisely in light of our difficult history in the 20th century, this return to former ways has something very positive about it. It is the return to the great tradition of Prussia as a nation of education and culture. The challenge is, in effect, to take the best of Prussia and to develop it further for the future. That is certainly something that is worth working towards. And when I imagine people, after the opening of the Humboldt Forum in 2019, walking down here from the Brandenburg Gate to the Spree, then first of all half way down on your left you will pass the Berlin State Library - Prussian Cultural Heritage, this gigantic Wilhelmine temple of learning, this cathedral of knowledge, then a bit further, not belonging to Prussian cultural heritage, the Berlin Humboldt University and on the other side of the road the State Opera House, one of the most important opera houses in Europe, and finally you reach - just a little further on - Museum Island. On the left you see the island with its new entrance building and the open steps of the Altes Museum, on the right the Humboldt Forum within Berlin Palace. Germany will thus be presenting itself as a cosmopolitan country that values its culture. The world will then again look at Berlin and say, my God, what a city!

We want not only to present the collections in a wholly innovative way, but over the last few years have also built up an interesting participatory structure: we‘re not doing all of this on our own, we want to involve the originating countries and are working closely with curators there, with the descendants of the people who made these things. One occasionally hears the question: is such a thing at all possible in Berlin, the venue of the Congo Conference of 1884/85? We do not shy away from our history, including that painful part of it. We know very well what it meant for Africa and the consequences involved, which endure to this day. Many thanks. But it was helpful for us all when it was precisely our African colleagues Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. mult. with whom we are cooperating who Hermann Parzinger President of said: if African art and culture gets Stiftung Preußischer Kulturbesitz presented in this of all locations on (Prussian Culture Heritage an equal footing with that of EuFoundation) rope, then something has indeed fundamentally changed in our relationship. And I am firmly of the con-

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Comments of VIP’s Here you will find statements of prominent individuals onbehalf of the reconstruction of the Berliner Schloss Ieoh Ming Pei, Joachim Gauck, (Star-Architect, President of the New York) Federal Republik of „I wish you good Germany success with the reIn my role as patron of construction of the the Berlin Palace Berliner Schloss!“ Humboldt Forum Foundation I would like in particular to emphasise the forward-looking asDaniel Coats, pects of the project. These lie for me (Former American in an outward-looking, cosmopolitaAmbassador to tion configuration of the content of Germany) the Humboldt Forum, which under„The completion of lines the role it will have in the heart the new American Emof Germany's capital in a productive bassy in Pariser Platz, and constructive dialogue between and the rebuilding of the Berliner the cultures of the world. Schloss will complete the restoration of Unter den Linden, making it one of the most important and beautiful Dr. Angela Merkel streets in all of Europe“ (Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany) Günther Blobel On February 3, 1945, (Nobel Prize during an air attack, Winner) the Berlin Palace sus„The rebuilding of the tained far reaching damage. Thereby, Berliner Schloss will and with the final demolition of the be as essential for the Palace in the 1950s, the city suffered a identity of the center wound which to this day has not yet been healed. The continuing discus- of Berlin as was the rebuilding of the sions concerning the demolition of Frauenkirche for restoring the identithe Palace of the Republic and the re- ty of Dresden. A rebuilt Schloss will construction of the former Palace enrich Berlin as much as the rebuilt make this clear. On this spot contro- Frauenkirche already enriches life in veries have been ignited regarding Dresden.“ how to deal with our own history -controversies which must be underPhilip Johnson † stood in the context of the differing (Star-Architect, evolutions of East and West GermaNew York) ny. For my part, as you know, I am in „I am in favor of the refavor of the rebuilding of the Palace. building of the Berliner Schloss because its reconstruction is so General important for the new face of the city Colin L. Powell, which will be so strongly dominated Secretary of State be the modern style. The historic inte(Retired) „The Berliner Schloss riors of the Schloss are not determinais an important part tive; it is the exterior form. Only [by of Berlin and German reconstructing these facades] is it poshistory and needs to be returned to sible to restore the spatial effect of the its rightful place and prominence. As relationship to Schinkel’s Old Museyou noted, I served in Germany dur- um and his Friedrichswerder ing the Cold War and remember with Church." joy the collapse of the wall and the unification of Germany. As Secretary Wolfgang Thierse of State, it was my honor and pleisure to waive certain security require(Former President ments so that the American Embassy building would be placed in the centof the German er of Berlin and not out in the subFederal Parliament) urbs.“ „It is a painful feeling to think that Berlin should not be allowed, as has been

possible for other cities, to recreate historical architecture… How much does a city like Berlin, which has so much, excellent, average and bad modern architecture, and which – in accordance with the famous saying – has destroyed itself again and again, need such a confirmation of the realization of its history… What an ensemble there will be at the east end of Unter den Linden with the partial reconstruction of the Schloss! That would be reclaimed history, surrounded by so much architectural modernity. Can you imagine that? Can it become reality? Let’s not be cowardly!“

the old market, however unique it may have been. His almost outraged reply was, „But Madam, you forget what history means for Poland.“

Dr. Marion Countess Dönhoff † (Publisher Die Zeit) „I am for the rebuilding of the Berliner Schloss because everything which allows history to become clearly perceptible is indispensable for the self understanding of the living and the coming generations. It would be erroneous to obstruct this idea with the argument that a copy is only something false. Warsaw, which was totally destroyed in accordance with Hitler’s wishes, is a good example. It was reduced from a city of one million to one of 2,000 inhabitants. I asked the then foreign minister of Poland, Rapacki, in the 1960’s whether it wasn’t better to first build dwellings for the people subsisting in the ruins and cellars instead of newly replacing

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (fascinated by Paladio’s buildings in Vicenza) „From lies and imagination the architect creates something third which enchants us.”

Prof. Dr. Richard Schröder Humboldt University Berlin (Publisher) „I am for the rebuilding of the Berliner Schloss because otherwise the venerable avenue Unter den Linden becomes a joke without a punch line.“

Hardy Krüger (Actor) „Your project is impressive, and I will exchange this or another word with my African gods, because it is important to me that you have success with this enterprise which must be considered to be of almost superhuman magnitude.“

Letter from the former President and honorary citizen of Berlin, George Bush Senior regarding our US activities.

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Dr. Kissinger’s Speech. Left: Dr. Jürgen Leibfried

Rebuilding Berlin Palace:

Henry Kissinger in Berlin by Wilhelm von Boddien During a trip to New York in early 2012, Kathleen von Alvensleben and I visited Henry Kissinger, the former American foreign minister and Nobel Peace Prize winner, in his office. Since way back in 1993, he has been one of the most important and highest profile supporters of the rebuilding of Berlin Palace. At that time the Friends of Berlin Palace had just erected the huge fullscale simulation of the palace on its exact historical footprint – a sight that fascinated millions. This dramatic representation of the historic building was the breakthrough in the palace debate, swinging sentiment in favour of its reconstruction. People were able to see what they had not been able to imagine and grasped the fact that it was only the palace that could restore the architectural harmony of the former centre of the city. Despite numerous other preserved, restored or completely reconstructed buildings, the day the palace was demolished this had ceased to exist. All of the others had been built after the palace and their architectural reference point was not so much each other as the palace itself. They had stood in a wonderful architectural dialogue with the palace, which was the site’s gravitational centre. Henry Kissinger was already helping us back then to take the tension out

Wilhelm von Boddien, Manfred Rettig CEO Stiftung Berliner Schloss ‒ Humboldt Forum, Dr. Henry Kissinger

of the often very politically oriented debate. He originates from Fürth in Franconia. His family, Jewish Germans, had to emigrate from National Socialist Germany to escape persecution. At that time he was a teenager, much taken by football and is today still a fan of the Fürth football team, which now plays in the top flight of the Bundesliga. In summer 1993 in Berlin a peace conference was held, attended by Henry Kissinger and many other important politicians, aimed at finding a way towards last-

ing world peace. Another attendee at the conference was the former Soviet ambassador in Bonn, Valentin Falin. Both had heard of the discussion about the reconstruction of Berlin Palace and were suddenly standing, without any formal advance notice, in our exhibition, surrounded by dozens of other visitors. Coincidentally I was also there – and when I had recovered from my shock, I welcomed them both and guided them around the exhibition. An animated

conversation ensued, in the course of which both Henry Kissinger and Valentin Falin expressed their inability to comprehend the heated arguments about the reconstruction of the palace. They were particularly irritated by many people’s concerns that the reconstruction could be interpreted as a return to a dangerous German nationalism. Especially as a Jewish emigrant, he couldn’t understand this, said Kissinger. What did the palace, which had stood in Berlin for centuries, have to do with the causes of National Socialism. On the contrary, he said, it was a great testimony to German culture. Falin added that in Moscow they had begun to rebuild two cathedrals in the city centre very near to the Kremlin that were demolished under Stalin’s regime and were doing so because everyone agreed that this act of barbarism had to be undone. “While you debate, we’ve long since started building!” Both then spontaneously signed the guest book as supporters of the reconstruction of Berlin Palace. Via Wolf Jobst Siedler, who published Henry Kissinger’s books at his publishing house, we had further contact with Kissinger – which confirmed my impression that in him we had gained a fascinating supporter to spread the word of our plans to

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Meet the press!

rebuild the palace. In 2005, we gained a further such supporter: Kathleen von Alvensleben, an American architect living in Berlin, who would go on to develop a Friends of Berlin Palace organisation in the USA. Since then she has repeatedly done successful work on our behalf in the country with great charm and dedication. She succeeded in setting up the Honorary Board for the Reconstruction of Berlin Palace (see page …), in which task Henry Kissinger helped her as if it was the most natural thing in the world to do and put her in touch with numerous contacts. Via him, for example, we were able to gain the support of the former American president and honorary citizen of Berlin, George H. Bush, who played in a key part in facilitating German reunification. On our visit this year we asked Henry Kissinger, who is now 89 years old, whether he would be available during on of his numerous visits to Germany and Berlin to be guest of honour at a fundraising party – he immediately said yes. He could do it in September – “Let me know!” Thus in September 2012 at the wonderful old villa of Jürgen Leibfried an evening function took place in a cheerful atmosphere with many high-profile guests.

Henry Kissinger talking to Dr. Christoph Franz, CEO Lufthansa

The highpoint was Henry Kissinger’s the palace a great testimony to Ger- Grunewald Forest was our guest of speech. He began in English, saying man culture and with in doing so to honour’s elegant home from home. that he didn’t know if people here in give Berlin back a piece of its identity. We would like to thank them all for Berlin would be able to understand It will not surprise you to learn that their wonderful generosity, for prohis German because of his strong the evening was a great fundraising viding this so willingly and for the Franconian accent. success and brought us a considera- ease and simplicity with which any Laughter all round. Then he carried ble way further along our path. questions were resolved. We thus enon in perfect German, telling us that This outcome, however, was also joyed an unforgettable, cheerful his father had been a proud Franco- made possible and enhanced by the evening with great hosts and lots of nian and had brought him up that very special fact that the entire even- contented guests! way as well. Franconians, he said, al- ing was gifted to the society. Jürgen Henry Kissinger’s visit was a highways orient themselves towards the and Serap Leibfried donated the point of our work in support of the south. Crossing the Main to the evening to us. rebuilding of Berlin Palace. It is simnorth was not something that you They invited guests and were delight- ply moving to have such friends as did. In America his father, he said, ful, generous and welcoming hosts. supporters! Thank you! had always believed that he had it in Lufthansa made the trip possible, him to become foreign minister of Mercedes-Benz provided a fabulous All Pictures of the event with many the USA, but he would never have car and the Schlosshotel in the thanks: © Christian Lietzmann, Berlin. imagined that he would one day be promoting the reconstruction of Berlin Palace. He would have regarded that as a sacrilege. But he was doing precisely that and doing so with a passion, because it was so hugely important, he said, to rebuild IT IS NOW TWENTY YEARS SINCE YOU VISITED THE EXHIBITION 'DAS SCHlOSS?' HERE IN BERlIN AND in the shape of




H.E. Dr. HEnry KiSSinGEr THE

PALACE MEDAL in GOLD IT IS BEING BESTOWED UPON YOU AS THE FIRST HOlDER TO MARK THE lAYING OF THE BERlIN PAlACE CORNERSTONE AND YOUR 90TH BIRTHDAY. John Kornblum, former US-Ambassador to Germany, Henry Kissinger, Kathleen von Alvensleben, Christa Princess of Prussia


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No money, no palace!

Our donors deserve recognition! We will thank you for your donation with a personal donor‘s certificate and a permanent display of your name in the palace. We and the body commissioning the reconstruction, the Berlin Palace – Humboldt Forum Foundation, will – with your agreement – publicly thank our donors and honour them inside the palace. To do this, we have developed a means of honouring our donors only possible in this age of electronic communication.

All donations of €50 or more All donors of €50 or more will have their names electronically projected onto the vaulted ceiling of the dome portal passageway, clearly visible for everyone to see. Hundreds of donors‘ name will float across the ceiling, with new names constantly being added, disappearing and then appearing again. At short intervals, the computer will interrupt this flow of names in favour of the name of one random donor. While the other names disappear, the selected donor will be honoured and thanked all on their own with a large-format projection. After that, the flow of names begins again. You will also be able to use a keyboard to pick out your name - and you will then be honoured in the same way, to the delight of yourself, your family and friends!


Donations of €100,000 to €999,999 These generous donors are additionally being honoured with prestigious name panels, which will be located at various spots within the palace, mainly in the busy foyer areas, as in other large museums around the globe.



Donations of over one million euros These donors will be honoured in a very special way, which will be individually agreed taking into account their personal wishes, e.g. naming a high-profile room, hall or foyer after them.

© Franko Stella HUF PG / Jan Pautzke, 2014


No money, no palace!


The Berliner Schloss Post

The reconstruction of Berlin Palace now needs your help more than ever! We still need 39 million – 66 million have already been raised! 105 million euros - that is the current total amount needed for the reconstruction of the historic façades and, as has now become necessary, the funding of the historic dome on the western façade and of the three portals in the palace‘s north-south passage and large foyer. This is our fundraising target (as at November 2016).

66 million donated so far. How that money has been used: Thanks to the help of our countless donors, it has already been possible to fund a great deal of work. This includes, for instance, the detective-like restoration of the lost historic plans and the complete construction in 1:1 scale of over 300 individual models of the palace façades, which are now being translated in meticulous and authentic fashion into over 3,000 separate works of art. Since April, the historic façades have been rising up in front of the concrete shell. The need for money is thus increasing rapidly.

We still lack 39 million – and time is pressing! We now need to quickly raise the outstanding money by the end of 2019. The reconstruction of Berlin Palace is ahead of schedule and fully within budget. It is becoming an excellent example of our ability to deliver major building projects on time. Some major sums will shortly be due for payment. The more we now raise, the easier you make it for us.

Your donations are used for the intended purpose – that we promise!

for-profit sector that is very low. As a result we continue to have the honour of bearing with great pride the DZI’s seal of approval, which is annually awarded to us anew only after thorough review of our figures.

105 Millionen müssen werden! 105 millionEuro euros areesneeded!












66 million already raised!












39 million still to raised!

How can I explain a figure of €55 million to anyone? If it is broken down to individual donors, it becomes a manageable figure that needn‘t scare off anyone: at an average donation of €400, we need now less than 100.000 donators.

Deutsches German Central Zentralinstitut Institute of Social für soziale Affairs (DZI) Fragen (DZI)

Your donation Ihre Spende will be received!

kommt an!

With your help we can raise the remainder as well! Ask your family, friends and acquaintances to help us raise the funds to rebuild Berlin Palace. We can raise the outstanding money if everyone helps, not just with their own donations, but also by attracting new donors. Send us additional addresses of people who may be interested and we will then write to them on your behalf – in a reserved, informative tone. Only in this way will we be able to recruit new friends for Berlin Palace and privately fund rebuilding it in its full former glory. That is something that we have learned over the last few years. Even now from the bottom of our heart we thank everyone who is enthusiastically involved on a paid or voluntary basis for your readiness to continue to help.

The cost of the Friends of Berlin Palace’s work is low. We have the Yours, Wilhelm von Boddien society’s costs firmly under control: despite all the promotional work, exhibitions, Humboldt Box costs, online work, catalogues Show public spirit! Make a donation and sponsor and newspapers that we produce, Berlin Palace, incorporating the the society’s costs last year were Humboldt Forum. just 5% of total income. In the not-

See for yourself how it works out by trying our donation calculator at the information point on Schlossplatz in Berlin.

97.500 donators …

… that‘s less than a full Olympic Stadium on two days!

… that‘s just 3% of the Berlin population and less than the entire population of Regensburg or Paderborn.

… that‘s less than 0.2% of all Germans.

Incidentally: The €400 donation mentioned above is tax-deductible. It can also be paid as a four-year subscription at €100 a year. Naturally, we are highly delighted by smaller donations as well.

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Please complete and return!

Deutsches German Central Zentralinstitut Institute of Social für soziale Affairs (DZI) Fragen (DZI)

Your donation Ihre Spende will be received!

kommt an!

Donations account: Deutsche Bank AG zugunsten Wiederaufbau Berliner Schloss BIC: DEUTDEBBXXX IBAN: DE41 1007 0000 0077227700

 Yes, I wish to donate the funds for . . . . . . . . . . . 1/5th partial stones to the total value of € . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . (Minimum donation of €50 per 1/5th partial stone)

 I would like to link a personal event (e.g. a major birthday, wedding anniversary or other big celebration) with an appeal for donations for the reconstruction of Berlin Palace. Please give me your advice.

 Yes, I wish to donate the funds for . . . . . . . . . . . whole palace stones to the  I would like to set up a legacy in my will benefiting the reconstruction of Berlin Palace. Please call me to advise how best to do this. total value of € . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . (Minimum donation of €250 per whole stone)  Yes, I wish to donate the funds for a façade decorative element. I have looked online and chosen item number . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . … for this. It costs € . . . . . . . . . . 

My full address is:

 I have not found an appropriate decorative element. I therefore need your advice. Please give me a call.

First name and surname

 Yes, I would like to set up a recurring donation. I am willing to donate € . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . every month / every 3 months / every 6 months / every year until further notice / up to and including . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . (please insert date). Please call me to advise how best to do this from my country.  I agree to my name (title, first name, surname, city) being shown online as a donor.

Street and building number City and postcode Telephone

E-mail or fax

Date, city and signature

Donations for the reconstruction of Berlin Palace are tax-deductible If you are a citizen of an EU member state or Switzerland, you can make donations to us that are tax-deductible in your own country. The way of doing this is via ‘Transnational Giving Europe’ (TGE). Please e-mail

‘Friends of Dresden, Inc.’ is a non-profit 501 (3)(c) charitable organisation. It is able to accept tax-deductible donations for the reconstruction of the Berlin Palace. It will issue confirmation of the donation to the donor for tax purposes as soon as the donation has been received.

If you are a US Citizen and want a confirmation for your tax-deductible donation, please make out your donation to ‘Friends of Dresden Inc.’ and send it to:

Friends of Dresden Inc. c/o Dr. Guenter Blobel 1230 York Avenue New York, NY 10021, USA

Find out more / Get involved  Please send me the complete catalogue showing the decorative elements of the palace façades.

Förderverein Berliner Schloss e. V. Postfach 56 02 20 22551 Hamburg Please send in a window envelope or fax to: +49 (0) 40 / 89 80 75 10

 I am interested in membership of the Friends of Berlin Palace. Please send me an application form.  I would like to help out in one of the Friends of Berlin Palace groups. Please let me know what possibilities there are for me in that regard.  I would like to provide my circle of friends with information on the palace reconstruction. Please send me free of charge . . . . . . . . . . . . . copies of the current Berliner Extrablatt. For 50 copies or more, please make use of our direct fulfilment option: DMark GmbH, Waldsiedlung-Tannenweg 1, 15306 Vierlinden OT Diedersdorf, Germany. Tel.: +49 (0)3346/ 88 32 - 0. Fax: +49 (0)3346/ 88 32 – 20

Förderverein Berliner Schloss e. V., Postfach 56 02 20, 22551 Hamburg, Tel: 040/89 80 75-0, Fax: 040/89 80 75-10, E-Mail:,


Wish to donate? Would like more information? Want to get involved yourself? Then check the relevant boxes, put the form in a window envelope and send it to us. We‘ll do the rest! It couldn‘t be any easier!

Schloss post 02 2017  
Schloss post 02 2017