Humboldt-Universität’s art collection comprises over 1,600 works that are closely related to the university, its history and its people. These include monuments, sculptures, installations, paintings, drawings, graphics and medals. The most extensive part of the collection consists of busts and paintings of university teachers, and there are numerous artistic representations of the HU buildings and Old Berlin. The insignia of the university – the chains of office of the rectors from 1818 and 1860 respectively and of the deans as well as the two sceptres (a goldsmith’s work created for the University of Erfurt at the end of the 14th century and transferred to the Berlin University in 1818 after its dissolution) – are also part of the art collection, as are some guest gifts. Other works of art, especially from the time of the GDR, include works by artists who were active at the university.
Only some of the artworks are permanently visible to the public on the outside grounds or in the university buildings. Many objects, on the other hand, are stored – in motion – for furnishing in the offices or in the magazine.
In addition to preservation, the artworks are scientifically researched and shown in the context of smaller exhibitions and interventions.
The art collection is not based on a planned concept or acquisition strategy. Beginning with the commissioned works for the furnishing of the Senate Hall with professors’ busts and the later collection of professors’ portraits, the collection grew and continues to grow over time, primarily through donations, bequests and estates.
Art Collection – Custody
CI Helmholtz Zentrum für Kulturtechnik
Hannoversche Straße 27 (Haus 25)