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The ‘Werkbundarchiv – Museum der Dinge’ opens at its new location on Leipziger Straße in Berlin-Mitte with a special exhibition.

Museum der Dinge, Profitopolis oder der Zustand der Stadt
Keyvisual „Profitopolis or the Condition of the City“ | Design: © Hug & Eberlein
Museum der Dinge, Profitopolis oder der Zustand der Stadt
Catalogue ‘Profitopolis or: Man needs another city’, 1971, Collection Werkbundarchiv – Museum der Dinge | Photo: Armin Herrmann

The Werkbundarchiv – Museum der Dinge was closed for seven months. Now, not only is the archive and library open again (by appointment), but the museum is also welcoming visitors to its new location at Leipziger Strasse 54 in Berlin-Mitte with a special exhibition entitled ‘Profitopolis or the Condition of the City’. The newly designed permanent exhibition on the Deutscher Werkbund and the product and design culture of the 20th and 21st centuries will open on 8 November. The change of location has become necessary because the museum’s long-standing premises in Berlin have been cancelled by a property fund – before the planned pavilion building in Karl-Marx-Allee is completed.

According to the museum, an overview of modern urban development shows how closely it is linked to the Deutscher Werkbund, be it the New Building of the 1920s, the international architecture exhibitions or the debates on historicisation and industrial construction. Two Werkbund exhibitions from the 1970s, ‘Profitopolis’, are therefore the focus of attention. They highlighted the political aspects of urban development, from citizens’ initiatives and land speculation to criticism of the car-friendly city and the reckless treatment of historic buildings and urban nature.

 A look at the urban space between the museum’s old and new locations shows how relevant this criticism is today,” says the announcement: “The exhibition undertakes a critical ramble between Kottbusser Tor and Spittelmarkt, locating discourses, initiatives and artistic positions on the contemporary city. 

The exhibition, curated by Florentine Nadolni, Alexander Renz and Lotte Thaa, is part of the 50th anniversary of the Werkbundarchiv – Museum der Dinge. From 23 May to 28 February 2025, it will present historical and contemporary objects, documents and materials from urban initiatives, complemented by artistic works by Daniela Brahm, Mirja Busch, Martin Kaltwasser, Wenke Seemann, Tracey Snelling, ufo ufo – urban fragment observatory and the Zentrum für Kunst und Urbanistik ZK/U.

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