The Humboldt-Forum and the partners involved
Stiftung Berliner Schloss – Humboldtforum (Berlin Schloss/Humboldt-Forum Foundation)
The non-profit foundation, set up in 2009, is responsible for officially commissioning the construction work and will later act as the legal owner, both of the land and the property on it that it will also administer. The foundation works closely with the Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media and, following a decision by the German parliament, is to be funded by the Ministry of Transport, Building and Urban Development. Under its chairman, Manfred Rettig, the foundation also coordinates cultural events and the dialogue with the public.
The construction of the Humboldt-Forum is being financed by public funds. The reconstruction of the Baroque façades will result in additional costs of 80 million euros. This sum of money is to be raised separately through donations. It is the role of Stiftung Berliner Schloss – Humboldtforum to procure these donations. „Berliner Schloss e.V.”, a society of friends headed by Wilhelm von Boddien, is responsible for procuring additional funds.
Future users of the Humboldt-Forum
The future users of the Humboldt-Forum are the Humboldt University Berlin, the Central and Regional Library Berlin and the National Museums in Berlin – Prussian Cultural Heritage. The Humboldt University will present its collections in a large exhibition and events room: the Humboldt-Lab. The Central and Regional Library Berlin will occupy parts of the Humboldt-Forum to house its departments for art, music, film and children’s literature. The second and third floors of the Humboldt-Forum will feature the collections of the Museum of Ethnology and the Museum of Asian Art, both of which are entities of the National Museums in Berlin.
The National Museums in Berlin
date back to the foundation of the Königliche Museen (royal museums) by Friedrich Wilhelm III of Prussia. They are now the largest institution at the Stiftung Preußischer Kulturbesitz (Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation), with 15 separate collections, three research institutes, the replica workshop and the administrative general directorate. Its combined collections comprise several million objects, including European and non-European art, archaeology and ethnology and together form a universal museum, spanning from the beginnings of humankind up to the present day. With around 500,000 objects from all continents and large collections of audio recordings, photographic and film material, the Museum of Ethnology
ranks as one of the largest and most important of its kind in the world. It collects, preserves and conducts research, primarily into the material cultural artefacts of pre-industrial cultures, predominantly from regions outside Europe. The Museum of Asian Art
was created after the merger in 2006 of the Museum of East Asian Art and the Museum of Indian Art. It houses one of the most important collections worldwide of artworks from the Indo-Asian cultural sphere, dating from the 4th millennium BC to the present day.
The Humboldt University Berlin
was founded in 1810 and is still considered the „mother of all modern universities”, a title for which it has Wilhelm von Humboldt to thank, as he envisaged the merger of research and instruction and the provision of an all-round humanistic education for the students. Today, the university is recognised around the world as a top-class research institution that has excelled in the first two rounds of Germany’s „Initiative for Excellence” – a government initiative that aims to promote outstanding research in higher education and raise the global profile of German universities. The Königliche Kunstkammer (royal cabinet of art) originally housed in the Berlin palace, was handed over to the Humboldt University upon its founding. It has since been greatly expanded. The Humboldt University aims to use these collections in the future Humboldt-Forum to accompany the European dialogue with world cultures as well as to create exhibitions of its own on selected themes.
The Central and Regional Library Berlin
was created in 1995 after the merger of the Amerika-Gedenkbibliothek (in former West Berlin) and the Berliner Stadtbibliothek (in former East Berlin). It is an accomplished result of the process of German reunification and the merger of significant libraries in the capital. The library comprises more than 3.4 million electronic and print media at three separate locations. In the Humboldt-Forum the library aims to enhance the world of objects from the two museums and the collections of the Humboldt University with its own attractive range of complementary media. It seeks to promote continual involvement and sustainability in the dialogue between the cultures.
Cultural Manager Martin Heller
The Swiss cultural manager, Martin Heller, has been responsible for the event planning in the future Humboldt-Forum since his appointment in late 2010. Over the coming years, Heller and his international project team will orchestrate the project planning for the Humboldt-Forum with its central event location, the Agora.
was opened in late June 2011. It serves as the information centre for the future Humboldt-Forum and the project planning. The construction of the building has been made possible thanks to funds from the company Megaposter and is administered by the Stiftung Berliner Schloss – Humboldtforum.