Friday, June 1, 2018

Elegant Elbe: Berlin 2b (6/1/2018)

Friday, June 1, 2018 (continued)
Now it was time to visit a few museums on Museum Island/Museum Insel, a UNESCO World Heritage site. Since 1999, Berlin has been working on a master plan to rebuild the Neues Museum, refurbish the other four museums, and connect them all at basement level with one common entrance, à la the Pyramid at the Louvre in Paris. They are still at work on it!
The Old National Gallery/Alte Nationalgalerie's collection dates back to a gift from the banker, Johann Heinrich Wilhelm Wagener, to the Prussian state in 1861. It was a bequest of 262 works with an emphasis on Belgian history painting and the Düsseldorf school. Over time, more sculptures, paintings and sketches were acquired. The museum specializes in sculpture and 19C painting.
The Princesses/Die Prinzessinnen (1795-1797,
by Johann Gottfried Schadow), statue of the daughters of
Karl II of Mecklenburg, Luise and Friedericke (KSS)
Wreath-throwing Victoria/Kranzwerfende Viktoria
(1843-1844, by Christian Daniel Rauch)
Psyche (1806, by Bertel Thorvaldsen)
Hebe (1796, by Antonio Canova)
Venus & Cupid (1864, by Reinhold Begas)
Two Vultures/Zwei Geier (1913, by Rembrandt Bugatti) (KSS)
Iron-rolling Mill: Modern Cyclops/Eisenwalzwerk: Modern Cyklopen
(1872-1875, by Adolph Menzel, a German Realist artist), showing
the gritty side of the emergence of the Industrial Age
Detail of a museum room (KSS)
A display room left un-restored to recall the
museum in the days of East Germany
First the German artists:
Perennial Flowers at the Gardener's Cottage/Blumenstauden am
(1928, by Max Liebermann, a leading
proponent of Impressionism in Germany)
Summer/Sommer (1872, by Hans Thoma)
Dachau Girl/Dachauerin (1879, by Wilhelm Liebl)
of the Düsseldorf school of painting)
The Isle of the Dead/Die Toteninsel (1883, by Arnold Böcklin
of the Düsseldorf school of painting)
Now to other European artists:
Cildren's Afternoon at Wargemont/L'après-midi des enfants à Wargemont
(1884, by Pierre-Auguste Renoir)
Still Life with Flowers and Fruit/Nature Morte avec Fleurs et Fruits
(circa 1890, by Paul Cézanne)
Houses in Argenteuil/Maisons d'Argenteuil
(1873, by Claude Monet)
In the Conservatory/Dans la serre (1879, by Édouard Manet)
Family of composer Claude Terrasse in the Garden/La famille du compositeur
Claude Terrasse au jardin
 (1896, by Pierre Bonnard), a folding screen (KSS)
Windmill of Galette on Montmarte, Paris/Le Moulin de la Galette
(1886, by Vincent van Gogh)
Next we visited the New Museum/Neues Museum (1843-1855, by Friedrich August Stüler, rebuilt 2003-2009 by David Chipperfield) was originally built as an extension to the Old Museum. The reconstruction incorporated much of the original building and it now houses the collection of Egyptian art from the Egyptian Museum/Ägyptisches Museum und Papyrus Collection/Papyrussammlung, of prehistoric objects from the Museum for Pre and Early History/Museum für Vor- und Frühgeschichte, and of classical antiquities from the Antiques Collection/Antikensammlung.
Old structure and new staircase in the New Museum
Berlin Gold Hat/Berliner Goldhut (Late Bronze Age,
circa 1,000 to 800 BCE, from thin gold leaf) appears
to represent a lunisolar calendar, indicating both
the lunar phases and the solar year
A pair of Lurs, Bronze Age blowing horns
(9-8C BCE), with audio to hear their sound
More of the original New Museum
Sword hilt and scabbard decoration of the
Frankish king Childeric I (circa 450-490) have red almandine
(from the garnet group) gems 
No photos were allowed of Nefertiti's Bust, the most famous item in the New Museum. The stunning sculpture of the 14C Great Royal Wife of the Egyptian Pharaoh Akhenaten, is a subject of several controversies. First is how the German archaeologist, Ludwig Borchardt, whose team discovered the bust in 1912, was able to keep it rather than the Egyptians, along with the demand for repatriation by Egypt. However, there are also doubts about its authenticity. And finally, why does she have no left eyeball?
Nefertiti Bust
Mosaic tile floor in the New Museum
Kent as a Roman Emperor
Anthropoid (human-shaped) sarcophagus with plaster portrait (1-2C CE)
Murals and the Netherworld and Eternity below
Unfortunately, the Berliner Green Head was visiting the J Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles!
Next: Berlin 2c.

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