{Germany} A Day Out at the Kulturforum Berlin

February 16, 2015


Last week I wrote about my visit to the newly re-opened Kunstgewerbemuseum in Berlin, and mentioned that you can buy a combination ticket for the other museums at the Kulturforum. So, today I though I’d just give you a quick overview of what those museums are. The building adjacent to the Kunstgewerbemuseum houses the Gemäldegalerie (lit. ‘Picture Gallery’), the Kupferstichkabinett (Museum of Prints and Drawings), and the Kunstbibliothek (Art Library). The latter two don’t have any permanent exhibition, but regularly curate temporary exhibitions in the Kulturforum’s special exhibition halls, and other smaller galleries on site.


After we had finished at the Kunstgewerbemuseum, #MuseumBaby seemed to be in a good mood, so we headed over to the special exhibition halls where a major exhibition of world renowned photographer Mario Testino is currently being presented by the Kunstbibliothek, in partnership with Swarovski. Mario Testino: In Your Face showcases the photographers full range of work in over 100 stunning photographs. Some I recognised from magazines or CD covers – images I had previously seen in small were suddenly looming over me several feet hight. Literally in my face. The colours and crispness of the photographs was incredible. And did I mention the size?! The introduction to the exhibition refers to Testino as “the magician of fashion photography”, and deservedly so. Wow. Just wow. I was also wowed by the friendliness of the gallery attendants, which I am sorry to say is not a given experience for me when visiting museums in Berlin with a baby. But here one attendant was very keen to tell me about his five grandchildren, while the other joked about recruiting #MuseumBaby as a future museum visitor. If only he knew! Mario Testino: In Your Face is showing until 26 July 2015.


Next we headed up the smaller exhibition of the Kupferstichkabinett, showing an exhibition of drawings by the artist Nanne Meyer. I really liked the range of creative techniques Meyer used – my favourite exhibit was her collection of drawings as extensions of map fragments, an example of which can be seen on the exhibition flyer. Sadly, the exhibition just finished at the weekend, but if you come across Nanne Meyer elsewhere, do check her out!


At this point even the best behaved baby in the world would probably be getting a bit fed up (I guess it would have been to much to expect that he might just sleep through it all), but I couldn’t leave without having a quick look at the famous Ghent Altarpiece with the missing panels reconstructed, on display at the Gemäldegalerie until 29 March 2015. And if, unlike me, you’re in no hurry to leave, there’s the rest of the Gemäldegalerie’s permanent exhibition to discover, with masterpieces from all periods of art history including Rembrandt, Titian, Vermeer and Caravaggio.


The Kulturforum also includes, in a separate building, the Neue Nationalgalerie – dedicated to 20th century art but currently closed for several years for necessary renovations . The nearby Musikinstrumentenmuseum (Museum of Musical Instruments) is also included in the combination ticket. Further information on opening times, admission prices and current special exhibitions can be found on the Kulturforum website.


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