Thursday, October 14, 2010
Blogging from Berlin ~ Museum Madness
Having bought a 3 day museum pass, I thought it best to try to see as much as possible. 12 museums in 3 days. It feels like a record. By the end of the 3 days, I felt a bit like a Picasso painting!
The museums visited were the Pergamon, Neues Nationalgalerie, Alte Nationalgalerie, Hamburger Bahnhof, Kathe Kallwitz, Museum fur Fotografie, Berggrum, Scharf Gerstenberg, Bauhaus, Gemaldegalerie, Neue National Gallery, Museum fur Film & Fernsehen! I feel like I have travelled thru time and taken an amazing art history course. It has been dazzling. Each day when I think I have exhausted the city, I am thrown off guard by a totally unexpected delight.
Museum fur Film & Fernsehen
self portrait from Museum fur Film & Fernsehen
The film museum was a find. The creativity that went into the exhibition space was stunning. One walks thru the history of German Film...and then finds oneself in a morgue like room with steel drawers from floor to ceiling. This is when Hitler came into power and the film industry was derailed and used solely for propaganda. Those who were not sent to the concentration camps fled to the US. It made me think more deeply about how repressive societies stifle the human spirit (Cambodia with Pol Pot and China's cultural revolution under Mao).
The Neue National Gallery is housed in a Ludwig Mies van der Rohe building as was my graduate school at the University of Chicago. It was an amazing, visceral experience to be in a building that felt so familiar, from the flooring to the railings and the chairs in the entryway! Besides the familiarity to my past, it was a very pleasing and coherent museum experience.
For the next two weeks Berlin is hosting a Festival of Lights at night. It was so much fun to see the city lit up. It was also great to see so many people strolling after dark.
There is so much to see in this city. The art collections are magnificent... and perplexing in that they survived. Germany lived thru an incredibly dark period in human history and has risen thru the ashes, phoenix-like, rebuilding with grandeur without forgetting its past. It is truly stunning.