Hamburger Bahnhof, Berlin

Hamburger Bahnhof
In the constellation of Berlin's remarkable art collections, the Hamburger Bahnhof is the place to see the most provocative works of contemporary artists. Conceptual pieces, performance art, video installations, anti-art manifestos - who knows what you will find here!

When I visited in November 2004, exhibit space in this former train station was entirely given over to display works from the collection of a prominent German publisher, Gustav Flick. It was a controversial exhibit, not so much for the artworks shown, but because of the political heritage of the Flick family. (Old man Flick was tried and convicted for Nazi-era crimes.) Apparently, some critics were saying that the Flick family was trying to "use" art to "rehabilitate" their image.

The Bahnhof reminded me of the Tate Modern in London, another contemporary artspace which was reclaimed from former "industrial" use. The large halls and broad open spaces make the Bahnhof a "fun" place to see what our generation's artists get up to. It was by far the most crowded of all the museums I visited in Berlin.

I have to admit, I don't really care for much contemporary art - it seems like a great deal of intellectual game-playing to me. But I enjoy going to contemporary art galleries: intellectual game-playing can be enjoyable when it is presented in the right manner!

  • Address: Invalidenstrasse 50/51
  • Directions: open late on Wednesdays and Fridays - till ten p.m.




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