New life in former crematorium in Wedding. Today a place for thinking, research, and experimentation. The silent green Cultural Quater is home to such groups as Music Board Berlin, which supports the pop music scene in Berlin and helps strengthen its cultural and economic reputation locally and internationally. !K7 Records, a label known for artists such as Nick Cave, Einstürzende Neubauten and the DJ-Kicks series with Carl Craig, and Kruder & Dorfmeister, is also here, as is the foundation dedicated to the work of the late filmmaker, author, and film essayist Harun Farocki and the film archive of Arsenal - Institut für Film und Videokunst e.V. as well as Pictoplasma - agency for character design, Art Space Savvy Contemporary and Luxoom media agency.
Impressive and beautiful
The most striking rooms of the 1911 structure is the domed, the former ceremonial hall and, with quite the architectural contrast, the underground hall made of concrete. If you’ve ever had the pleasure of experiencing a concert in the domed hall with its atmospheric intimacy, you’re sure to remember this strong acoustic and visual experience for a long time. In addition to the domed and concrete halls, the silent green also features wings built around the sunny courtyard and the “cube”, a room for seminars and yoga, Pilates, Shiatsu, etc. classes.
Delicious and a bit odd
Charlie Huber and his team serve up daily specials, coffee, and sweets in the on-site canteen with adjoining garden. Plantagenstraße 30 is the entrance to the Galerie Patrick Ebensperger, showing contemporary art since 2013.
Always a step ahead of its time
The listed former crematorium in Wedding was built in the early 20th century as the first crematorium in the city. Cremation at the time was considered a sign of progress, secularization, environmental awareness, and concern for hygiene. The Wedding crematorium sits in the middle of the district’s first cemetery which opened in 1828. The centrepiece of the building is the 17 metre high octagonal funeral hall. The ensemble is completed by the adjoining wings surrounding the octagonal courtyard. After the underground sections of the crematorium were enlarged in 1997, the city decided to close it in 2002. 2013 saw the beginning of the renovation and remodelling for the silent green Cultural Quarter, in close cooperation with the Heritage Office.
The adjacent silent green columbarium is an oasis of peace and tranquillity. It contains the family graves of Russian exiles, the grave of Siegfried Ochs, the Prussian interior minister during the writing of the Weimar Constitution, and the tomb of the Gutmann banking family who founded Dresdner Bank. Ida Siekmann, the first person killed trying to cross the Berlin Wall, was cremated here.
Other interesting places in Wedding
A memorial plaque can be seen at the spot where Ida Siekmann fell trying to abseil from the house in Bernauer Straße over the Wall to the West just one week after the Wall was erected.
For much more information to the Berlin districts there is our Going Local App by visitBerlin.
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