Neue Nationalgalerie refurbishment

View from Potsdamer Strasse, 1968
View from Potsdamer Strasse, 2013
Lower ground floor, staircase hall, 2016
Upper hall, staircase and wardrobe, 2016
Upper hall, Dismantling of the wardrobe, 2016
View from south-west, 2014
View from south-west, 2016

The Neue Nationalgalerie in Berlin’s Kulturforum is one of the icons of twentieth-century architecture. The only building realised by Mies van der Rohe in Europe after his emigration to the USA, the Neue Nationalgalerie has been dedicated to the art of the twentieth century since its opening in 1968.

Neue Nationalgalerie refurbishment

The Neue Nationalgalerie in Berlin’s Kulturforum is one of the icons of twentieth-century architecture. The only building realised by Mies van der Rohe in Europe after his emigration to the USA, the Neue Nationalgalerie has been dedicated to the art of the twentieth century since its opening in 1968. After almost 50 years, the damage, deficiencies and deficits of intensive use are to be carefully and sustainably addressed, within the restrictions imposed by the building’s status as a listed monument. The refurbishment and modernisation aims for maximum preservation of the existing fabric, with minimum visual compromise to the building’s original appearance.

In order to upgrade the services to current museum standards, the stone cladding and all the interior fittings must first be dismantled. Tens of thousands of original building components are being removed and restored, before being reinstalled in their precise original positions. The services being updated include air-conditioning, artificial lighting, security, and visitors’ facilities, including cloakroom, café and museum shop, as well as improving disabled access and art handling.

The key to the complex planning process for this project is finding a balance between the requirements of current museum usage and the importance of the Neue Nationalgalerie as a listed monument. Though the essential new interventions remain subordinate to the existing design of the building, they are nevertheless discreetly legible as contemporary elements. The refurbishment does not represent a new interpretation, but rather a respectful repair of this landmark of the International Style.

Project start:
2012
Completion due:
2019
Opening due:
2020
Gross floor area:
13,900 m²
Client:
Stiftung Preußischer Kulturbesitz represented by Bundesamt für Bauwesen und Raumordnung
User:
Staatliche Museen zu Berlin
Project management:
KVL Bauconsult GmbH
Architect:
David Chipperfield Architects Berlin
Partners:
David Chipperfield, Martin Reichert, Alexander Schwarz (Design lead)
Project architects:
Daniel Wendler, Michael Freytag
Tender procedure and site supervision:
BAL Bauplanungs und Steuerungs GmbH
Structural engineer:
GSE Ingenieurgesellschaft mbH Saar, Enseleit und Partner
Services engineer:
Ingenieurgesellschaft W33 mbH with Domann Beratende Ingenieure GmbH
Building physics:
Müller BBM GmbH
Façade consultant:
DS-Plan
Landscape architect:
TOPOS Stadtplanung Landschaftsplanung Stadtforschung
Photography:
Archiv Neue Nationalgalerie, Nationalgalerie, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin, Reinhard Friedrich, Ute Zscharnt for David Chipperfield Architect