The architecturally striking Jewish Museum is the best place in Berlin to get an overview of German-Jewish relations and to understand the nature of the integration of the two cultures before the Holocaust’s horrors. Designed by Daniel Libeskind, the building is clad in polished silver metal and features severe angles and thin window slits that create a deliberately jarring impression. The interior is equally intriguing, especially the three long, intersecting corridors that lead to installations addressing aspects of the Holocaust: a garden of pillars meant to disorient; a windowless Holocaust Tower; and a space filled with thousands of grimacing iron masks that grind together as you walk on them. Across the street, the Jewish Academy (open to the public) has a related research center, library, and educational institution.
A Modern Look at Jewish History
The Jewish Museum allows the visitor to wind their way through architect Daniel Libeskind’s zigzag design of the building through 2000 years of Jewish History. There are exhibitions on the Holocaust that are stark and resounding (literally) and walkways telling of religious history starting at the Garden Eden.
Composition of Berlin
I was wandering the side streets of Kreuzberg after visiting the Jewish Museum and was suddenly struck how the plastered posters throughout the city created unlikely art created by pops of neon color and rhythmic patterns. I found this scene to perfectly encapsulate the mix of Berlin‘s strong historical roots with its youthful, creative energy.
Garden of Exile
A garden can be found by the exit of the Jewish Museum. The space, designed by architect Daniel Libeskind, is rich in symbolism and social commentary.
A Beautiful Reflection
The Jewish Museum in Berlin.
A Jewish Memorial
These 10,000 iron cut-outs are from the Jewish Museum in Berlin. The architect designed this room with a purpose. When you walk on the faces (imagine) they grind together in a shriek/scream of metal against metal. The walking is difficult and uncomfortable to your feet—the combination of noise and discomfort being the point of this particular space. The room itself is a cold, lonely slab of concrete. It achieves everything the architect wanted it to. This is but one of many fascinating things to see at this museum.
You Get The Point
This is in the Jewish Museum in Berlin, a fascinating place which is more about the culture than the Holocaust . . . except for this. You’re supposed to walk on them, but I couldn’t do it. They clank when you do.