Rethinking Museums Politically: Berlin’s Altes Museum, Museum Island and the (reconstructed) City Palace
Berlin, Technische Universität, May 11 – 12, 2017
Since its opening in 1830, Karl Friedrich Schinkel’s Altes Museum has been located in Berlin’s highly symbolic centre, defined by the royal
City Palace, Cathedral and Armory. While the museum’s performative architecture responds to its location, the current curatorial concept
and display no longer reflect the original museological significance of the building.
Taking Berlin’s Altes Museum as a case study, the conference seeks to reconsider the museum’s transhistorical political role and ask how the
museum might critically respond to contemporary political controversies about the reconstruction of a former royal/imperial City Palace
considered to house the non-European Ethnological Museum and Asian Art Museum.
The conference will discuss how museums might translate their museological legacy into the 21st century and retain socio-political
relevance in an enforced dialogue with architectural symbols of political as well as corporate power in today’s urban spaces.
Thursday 11 May 2017
TU Berlin, Institute for Art History,
Strasse des 17. Juni 150/152, Lecture Hall A 151
18:00 Welcome Bénédicte Savoy, TU Berlin
18:15 Museums, Power, Knowledge
Tony Bennett, Western Sydney University
Friday 12 May 2017
TU Berlin, Main Building,
Strasse des 17. Juni 135, Lecture Hall H 3005
10:00 Welcome and Introduction
Andrea Meyer und Annette Loeseke
10:15 From Schloss to ‘Schloss’: Whose museums?
Nikolaus Bernau, Architecture and museum historian, Journalist, Berlin
10:45 Personal Development as Political Principle for the Berlin Museums: Museum for All?
Elsa van Wezel, Institut für Museumsforschung, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin
11:15 Museum Architecture and Location: The Legacy of Berlin’s Altes Museum
Annette Loeseke, New York University Berlin
12:00 Lunch break
13:30 Museum Architecture as “Truth Spot”? Materials and Memories
Paul Jones, University of Liverpool
14:00 Design for Creative Lives
Suzanne MacLeod, University of Leicester, School of Museum Studies
14:30 Coffee break
15:00 Exhibiting the Museum. Presenting the History of Berlin’s Museum Island
Tom Duncan, Duncan McCauley, Berlin
15:30 Panel-Discussion: Rethinking Museums Politically
Nikolaus Bernau, Tom Duncan, Paul Jones, Suzanne MacLeod, Elsa van Wezel
Moderated by Andrea Meyer und Annette Loeseke
Conference language is English.
Participation is free. No registration required.
Dr Annette Loeseke, New York University Berlin
Dr Andrea Meyer, Technische Universität Berlin