Das Jüdische Museum, Berlin

Today I went to visit the Jewish Museum in Berlin. It’s a pretty famous building, designed by Daniel Libeskind. Actually, it’s two buildings: the Collegienhaus, through which you enter, and the Libeskind Building next door. The two are joined underground.

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I keep writing words and then deleting them, so difficult is it to describe the experience. It was gut-wrenching to see the small pieces of everyday life on display; curated wisps of human lives that were so cruelly extinguished. The extraordinarily beautiful frame for the exhibition is the building itself. Lots of concrete, black slate, small windows. The photos might explain better than I can. I didn’t take any pictures of the actual exhibition, just of the building.

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The Garden of Exile. Forty nine concrete pillars sit on a tilted foundation. There’s a tree planted at the top of each pillar.

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Names of concentration camps line the corridor called Axis of the Holocaust.

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The Holocaust Tower.
One of the most profoundly affecting spaces I’ve ever been in.

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“The architect Daniel Libeskind created empty spaces in several parts of the museum. These so-called voids extend vertically through the entire museum and represent the absence of Jews from German society.
The Memory Void (above) contains a work by the Israeli artist Menashe Kadishman, who calls his installation Shalekhet, or Fallen Leaves. He has dedicated the over 10,000 faces covering the floor to all innocent victims of war and violence”.
Words taken from the museum wall.

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Fallen Leaves

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Even the ceilings are beautiful.
The windows here and there allow wafts of natural light.

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I felt a lot of things. I was gutted. I cried. I was massively inspired. Some of the stories made me smile. I thought that humans are cruel and cold. I thought humans are good and kind. I thought acceptance of others, actual acceptance, is the key.

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10 Responses to Das Jüdische Museum, Berlin

  1. tesskitchen1 says:

    Great pics – thanks!

  2. Siobhán says:

    Perfect Sile. Absolutely perfect….x

    • silelooksup says:

      Thanks darling. I remembered that exercise Peter did with us while I was there – do you remember? 50 years after the end of the war. it was an incredible place. Sxx

  3. Marcus says:

    Grma as é sin a scríobh

  4. I loved this piece. Thanks.

  5. Paula says:

    just fantastic emotional writing and imagery, I’m transported instantly to every place you are. And this place evokes so much, you’ve captured it beautifully x

  6. deirdresays says:

    This puts me in mind of my visit to S21 Prison museum In Cambodia. The building was less impressive but how it affected me was not.

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