Tuesday, October 17, 2006

After Six Years, Berlin's Bode Museum/Museum Island Reopening Marks Milestone In Restoration Of European Civilization

"Berlin's famed Museum Island complex moves a big step closer to recovering its former glory this week when the Bode Museum, home to the city's sculpture collection, reopens after six years of restoration.

The domed building, which juts out into the Spree River in the heart of former East Berlin, is the second of the five Neoclassical museums to get a full makeover as part of a government-funded $1.5-billion overhaul.

It houses about 1,700 sculptures, along with Berlin's Museum of Byzantine Art and Numismatic Collection. The museum will reopen to visitors on Thursday, after a ceremony today.

Visitors can expect "an overview of the history of European sculpture from late antiquity, around [C.E.] 300, to about 1800," said Arne Effenberger, the sculpture collection's director.

The collection includes medieval works such as Giovanni Pisano's "Man of Sorrows" and Presbyter Martinus' "Madonna," and Renaissance pieces such as Donatello's "Pazzi Madonna" to German sculpture of the 18th century.

Effenberger said in an interview that visitors also would see about 150 paintings from the city's Gemaeldegalerie museum, illustrating "aspects of the mentality of a particular era in art history" that are common to painting and sculpture.

The Byzantine collection features works from the 3rd to the 15th centuries, including Roman sarcophagi, ivory carvings and mosaic icons....

The five museums, at a UNESCO World Heritage Site, suffered severe damage during World War II and were only partly restored by communist East Germany." ...

Geir Moulson "Berlin museum set to reopen" Los Angeles Times October 17, 2006


Bust of a Lady of Rank, late 5th–early 6th century C.E.
Byzantine; Made in Constantinople
Marble; H. 20 7/8 in. (53 cm)
The Cloisters Collection, 1966 (66.25)
Metropolitan Museum, New York City


America faces a choice as to whether it will continue to participate in European civilization.

Photo credit: Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Cloisters. With thanks.


Dumbarton Oaks Museum and Garden. Washington, D.C.

Kyiv Museum of Western and Oriental Art, Kyiv, Ukraine, Europe.

Smithsonian Freer and Sackler Galleries, Washington, D.C. "In the Beginning: Bibles Before the Year 1000"

Lviv History Museum, Lviv, Ukraine, Europe

Web Gallery of Art, created by Emil Kren and Daniel Marx, Budapest, Hungary, Europe.


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