St. Matthäus-Kirche in the Kulturforum Berlin is a historical centre, a space for contemporary art and a religious place of peace for Berliners and Berlin visitors.
The St. Matthäus-Kirche (St. Matthew church) at the Kulturforum Berlin is considered a place of contemporary art. It is not only an oasis for all religions, but also plays a historical and cultural role in the city.
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The St. Matthäus-Kirche in the course of time
From a historical point of view, St. Matthew's is the oldest building in the ensemble. The exterior design reminds of the origins and thus the complex history of the Kulturforum: built in 1846 by Schinkel's student Friedrich August Stüler in a park landscape outside the city gates, the building experienced a series of urban changes: the early Gründerzeit quarter (the so-called "Geheimratsviertel") at the end of the 19th century, the first deconstruction and new buildings within the framework of Albert Speer's plans for the so-called imperial capital "Germania", an urban wasteland after the destruction of the Second World War and finally the emergence of the Cultural Forum within sight of the inner-German border.
St. Matthäus-Kirche is also considered a place of remembrance of the Protestant theologian and resistance fighter Dietrich Bonhoeffer, who was ordained as a pastor here on November 15, 1931.
The Oasis of the Cultural Forum
Culturally, St. Matthäus-Kirche is one of the most important actors of the Cultural Forum. As a venue of events for the St. Matthew's Foundation, with the statutory mandate to lead and promote the dialogue between art and church as well as the dialogue of cultures, contemporary art as well as concerts, readings and discussions are presented in the church space on a regular basis.
The monument in the church nave, by Micha Ullman, deserves special attention. As with Ullman's sculpture commemorating the burning of books at Bebelplatz, the viewer immediately becomes part of the artwork.
The tower of St. Matthäus-Kirche is the perfect "observation tower" for a panoramic view of the Kulturforum and the buildings of Potsdamer Platz.
St. Matthäus-Kirche is also the only cultural space in the Kulturforum ensemble that is open all day and offers free admission.
In its religious function, the St. Matthäus-Kirche is a spiritual oasis in the hustle and bustle of the big city. As one of Berlin’s five city churches with guest preachers from all over the city, it has found a congregation that extends far beyond its immediate surroundings and far beyond the confessional boundaries. With its focus on New Music, it sets unique accents in the field of church music throughout Berlin. As a space of lived faith, the church in the Kulturforum ensemble reminds of the importance of an open-minded cultural life and is home to a Berlin-wide congregation in the Kulturforum.
Information for your visit to the St. Matthäus-Kirche
You can easily reach the St. Matthäus-Kirche by taking the U2 to Potsdamer Platz. The S1, S2 and S25 also stop here.
Close to the St. Matthäus-Church you will find the Gemäldegalerie, the Kupferstichkabinett, the Neue Nationalgalerie, as well as the Berliner Philharmonie, the Musikinstrumenten-Museum and of course the Tiergarten.