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The representative living rooms of Schloss Britz, historically reconstructed in the style of the Gründerzeit, are being integrated into an art exhibition for the first time. "Expeditions into the Depths of Memory" focuses on Walter Benjamin's childhood memories, which he wrote down in the 1930s, and makes it possible to experience them anew in an authentic-looking interior. Seven positions of contemporary art also deal with the theme of memory. 

Veranstaltungen in Berlin: Expeditionen in die Tiefe der Erinnerung. Walter Benjamins Berliner Kindheit um Neunzehnhundert.
Jens Ferchland


Walter Benjamin (1892-1940) is considered one of the most important thinkers of modernism and had his biographical roots in the Berlin of the Gründerzeit. Benjamin's childhood took place in the splendidly furnished flats of his parents and grandparents in western Berlin. Britz Palace with its Gründerzeit furnishings generally corresponds to the living environment of his parents and grandparents described by Benjamin in his collection of texts "Berliner Kindheit um Neunzehnhundert" (Berlin Childhood around Nineteen Hundred). Objects are now temporarily inserted into the reconstructed furnishings of the Britz mansion, creating atmospheres that coincide associatively with the author's childhood memories and seemingly turn the historical exhibition rooms into his childhood home. In the staged interiors, selected text miniatures from Benjamin's "Berlin Childhood around Nineteen Hundred" will be heard anew. In addition, seven contemporary artistic positions will approach the person of Walter Benjamin and his work. The result will be an animated dialogue between literary texts, autographs and manuscripts and contemporary interpretations. At the centre of the reflections are Benjamin, the time of his childhood and his own methodology of memory. The retrospective view of one of the most important intellectuals of the early 20th century in the context of his childhood in Berlin at the end of the Kaiserreich condenses into a highly emotional mood picture that does not leave it at a retrospective, but does not ignore current social issues. 


The exhibition will be accompanied by a programme of workshops and readings as well as a publication in the format kleinereihe.
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Opening hours:
Tuesday to Sunday, 12:00 to 18:00