A house for the Expressionist artists' collective Brücke, to which he himself belonged - that was what the artist Karl Schmidt-Rottluff wanted. In 1967, his wish came true when the Brücke Museum opened in Dahlem. The elegant bungalow, situated on the edge of Grunewald with simple, light-flooded rooms, was designed by Werner Düttmann.
The location was well chosen, because the Brücke artists not only used nature as a motif in their work, but often set up their easels directly outdoors. To this day, the museum’s architecture allows for a fusion between indoor and outdoor space. Through floor-to-ceiling windows, the greenery of the surroundings enters into a dialogue with the colors on the canvases of Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Max Pechstein and Erich Heckel. And thus, the architecture allows interior and exterior spaces to merge to this day.
Schmidt-Rottluff and Erich Heckel steadily acquired their Brücke colleagues’ artworks until their deaths, when they were given to the museum. Today, museum director Lisa Marei Schmidt uses the world's largest Brücke collection as the starting point for her exhibitions: The fact that she is not only interested in exploring the works’ heritage, but also draws connections to the present, is what makes her vision so special. The museum juxtaposes paintings, watercolors, woodcuts, drawings and sculptures from the Brücke collection with contemporary artists’, allowing the historic group, which was active between 1905 and 1913, to be seen through a fresh lens. And if you want to stay in dialogue with art and nature, stop by the neighboring Kunsthaus Dahlem and consider a walk through the Grunewald.
This building is a work of art in itself: With the New National Gallery, opened in 1968, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe gave Berlin not only a permanent home for its 20th-century art collection, but also a temple to classical modernism. In the summer of 2021, the building reopened its doors after several years of renovation. The spectacular architecture and the high-caliber works have since made the building a crowd pleaser once again - attracting visitors from near and far.