The Palace Basement, Video Panorama, Sculpture Hall and Traces – the opening of the Humboldt Forum from September 2020 onwards will allow visitors to experience the site’s multifaceted history at close range.
On the ground floor of the southern side of the Humboldt Forum you will find an impressive 28-metre-long video panorama, giving a visual impression of the various aspects of the site’s history – from its beginnings in the twelfth century through to the present day.
A staircase beneath the Eosander Gate leads down to the historic Palace Basement. This is where you will find surviving sections of the medieval Dominican monastery as well as the foundations of the Berlin Palace, which were uncovered from 2008 onwards. In the winding corridors you can discover everything from a chicken coop to the imperial heating system, which was highly technologically advanced for its time. All these finds shed light on the lives and work of the monastery’s residents and the palace’s servants.
Take yourself on a treasure hunt for traces of the past: clues to the site’s history can be discovered in many places in the building. There are surprising exhibits highlighting the distant and more recent past. The main focus is on the East German parade ground, the Palace of the Republic and the period after it was demolished. For example, the guidance system from Klaus Wittkugel of the Palace of the Republic will be presented. Many of the exhibits, such as the silver model of HMS Victory once owned by Kaiser Wilhelm II, can now be seen by the public once more for the first time in many years.
In the Sculpture Hall, situated between the Schlüter courtyard and the eastern wing facing the river Spree, you can get a close-up look of the original figures which once adorned the Palace facade. These works are true masterpieces of Baroque sculptural art. They include rams’ heads and eagles which have not been integrated into the reconstructed facade in order to protect them from the elements. A film installation in the Southern Cabinet shows the reconstruction of the facades.