Opening of the Humboldt Forum in Berlin

Humboldt Forum. Stiftung Humboldt Forum im Berliner Schloss, Photo: David von Becker
“Insights, the Humboldt Brothers”. (c) Stiftung Humboldt Forum im Berliner Schloss. Photo_Alexandre Schipel

The Humboldt Forum, the largest cultural development in Europe and the most ambitious in Germany this century, will open its doors to the public for the first time on Tuesday July 20, 2021, with free entry for the first 100 days to the inaugural exhibitions.

From the Cave du Palais on the ground floor and first floor, visitors are invited to discover presentations on the history of the site and the Humboldt brothers, and to experience the inaugural exhibitions Terrible Beauty. Elephant – Human – Ivory, Sit down! An exhibition for children, After nature and GLOBAL BERLIN.

In “Terrible beauty”. Mirror cabinet. Victoria and Albert Museum.

Berlin’s new monument will be officially opened at a ceremony scheduled for Tuesday, July 20, attended by German Minister of State for Culture Monika Grütters, Berlin Mayor Michael Müller and Managing Director Hartmut Dorgerloh.

The new cultural district has developed over the past decade on a key historic site in the heart of Berlin, adjacent to Museum Island, at the crossroads of Brandenburg Gate and Alexanderplatz. The Humboldt Forum is designed as a space that brings together arts and culture, science, exchange and debate, the first of its kind in Europe. Inspired and inspired by the spirit of Alexander and Wilhelm von Humboldt, perhaps the foremost German thinkers of education, culture, science and nature, it is home to four partners who will present a diverse program of ‘exhibitions, discussions, performances and events, which bring together different cultures, perspectives and ideas on some of the most important issues facing our world today.

Installation “Terrible Beauty”. Stiftung Humboldt Forum im Berliner Schloss / Photo: Alexander Schipel

The building’s vast outdoor spaces are already open all day and admission is free. At Tuesday July 20, the first partner projects will be unveiled to the public.

Terrible Beauty: Elephant. Human. Ivory (July 20 – November 28, 2021)
A critical examination of the relationship between man and the global ivory trade. As early as 40,000 years ago, humans used tusks to create the oldest known art objects. At the same time, ivory today is synonymous with injustice and violence, slavery and colonial exploitation. The program – developed in collaboration with the Staatliche Museen zu Berlin, the Museum für Naturkunde and the National Museums of Kenya – aims to bring this complex history to life with a special exhibition, education and awareness programs and artistic events.

Humboldt Laboratory: After Nature
Presented by Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin (Humboldt University)
The inaugural exhibition of the Humboldt Lab After nature addresses the interdependencies of climate change and biodiversity loss and global challenges to democratic principles of order. The crisis of nature is closely linked to societal crises. The liberal model of society, for example, with its promises of progress and prosperity, has brought about enormous changes in human-environment systems. The exhibition brings together in the form of a modern cabinet of curiosities a whole range of research approaches on these and other topical questions and links them to positions in the history of science.

Presented by Kulturprojekte Berlin (Cultural Projects Berlin); the Stadtmuseum Berlin (Berlin City Museum)
Spread over an area of ​​4000 square meters, Berlin Global was developed by and with the communities of Berlin to reflect the true character of the city. This permanent exhibition explores the history of the city through thematic exhibitions incorporating a plethora of music, sounds, installations, artistic commissions, graphics, photographs and objects, which together create a powerful experience for many. levels. Berlin Global is the first in a new generation of city museums – the first to be dedicated to Berlin itself. Saturated with interactive technology, the exhibit will take the public on an exciting cultural journey through the city, with topics ranging from revolution and war to entertainment and fashion.

Armchair in the throne room. (C) Stiftung Preußische Schlösser und Gärten Berlin-Brandenburg

Impressions: The Humboldt Brothers
The name Humboldt is synonymous with education and science worldwide. Alexander von Humboldt, born in 1769, collected and documented everything he got his hands on – from plants and rocks to animals and human bones. Wilhelm von Humboldt, two years his senior, was a social scientist specializing in the philosophy of language, political theory and the philosophy of history. Together, their life and work have inspired countless publications. Their connected way of thinking, their curiosity and their cosmopolitanism are the inspiration of the artistic and scientific program of the Humboldt Forum. The exhibition Impressions. The Humboldt brothers highlights their work, the circumstances of their time, and connects with the principles of the Humboldt Forum.

Humboldt Forum. Stiftung Humboldt Forum im Berliner Schloss / Photo: Alexander Schipel

Sit down! (July 20, 2021 – March 27, 2022)
When, where, why and how do we sit? How to express conventions, statutes or gestures of welcome? And who really occupies what place in groups and societies? This children’s exhibit offers our youngest visitors aged three to ten – and their accompanying adults – the space to explore, play and learn to sit in different cultures.

Three different permanent exhibitions to help the visitor understand the long and fascinating history of the Humboldt Forum site will also be open, the Palace Cave, the Sculptures Hall and a video panorama.

Throughout the summer, a wide range of programs will take place – from artistic installations and screenings to guided tours, lectures and discussions to artistic interventions, dance and cinema. These include an open-air festival with pop-up architecture and concerts in August, and cultural education programs in the large-scale workshop spaces.

On September 22, 2021, the west wing of the Ethnologisches Museum (Ethnological Museum) and the Museum für Asiatische Kunst (Asian Art Museum) will open, followed by the opening of the museums east wing in the first half of the year. 2022. The museums will present more than 20,000 exhibits from Africa, Asia, Oceania and the Americas on the second and third floors of the Humboldt Forum.

The Humboldt Forum will also offer places to eat, drink and shop, including a contemporary bistro now open daily on the ground floor between the Schlüter courtyard and the passage, with more dining options to follow.

All exhibitions are free for the first 100 days. Advance reservation is required. Tickets are available online at

Humboldt Forum
Schloßplatz, 10178 Berlin, Germany