Glaswork by Peter Kowalski, Photo: Artur Żmijewski


„The Deported“ by Hermann Joachim Pagels, Photo: Artur Żmijewski

Deutschlandhaus As Venue

Ludwig Peter Kowalski

Hermann Joachim Pagels

The building today known as Deutschlandhaus was built in 1926 as the eastern wing of the adjacent Europahaus. Later taken over by the Third Reich government in 1933, the buildings housed amongst others the Ministry of Labor. Damaged during the war, they were renovated in the 1950s and have since been used by several government offices. From 1960, under the name Haus der ostdeutschen Heimat (House of the East German Homeland) Deutschlandhaus has also been used as a meeting point for the Landsmannschaften (territorial groups) and the Berlin branch of the League of Expellees and devoted itself to the preservation of "East German cultural assets." In 1974, the Foundation Deutschlandhaus was established and the building was given the name Deutschlandhaus. The building contains a number of art works including stained glass windows and lightboxes by Ludwig Peter Kowalski (1891–1967) and a sculpture by Hermann Joachim Pagels (1876–1959). Pagels’s work Die Ausgewiesenen (The Expellees) (1922) is located on the ground floor of Deutschlandhaus. It depicts German refugees who left formerly German regions, which became part of Poland or France after the First World War. Pagels studied at the State School of Fine Arts in Berlin. In the 1908 Who’s Who publication, he stated his political views as "social-liberal." During the Third Reich, he became famous for busts depicting Hitler, Mussolini, Hess, or Goebbels and his work was exhibited by the Nazis in the Große Deutsche Kunstausstellungen (Great German Art Exhibitions) (1937–1944) at Haus der Kunst in Munich.


In 1950, Silesian artist Kowalski designed three monumental stained glass windows for the exhibition Deutsche Heimat im Osten (German Homeland in the East), taking place in the Berlin exhibition grounds. The windows show an allegorical depiction of Prussia (agriculture and horse breeding), Silesia (mining and linen weaving), and Pomerania (agriculture and fishing) and frame the staircase of Deutschlandhaus since 1975. He also created several glass works picturing the emblems of all current German federal states and former German territories, which originate from the Bundeshaus in Berlin-Wilmersdorf—the seat of the appointed representative of the Federal Government of Germany in Berlin during the division of Germany.


Metaphorically speaking, Deutschlandhaus seems to be a container of repressed or excluded German memory, which the Stiftung Flucht, Vertreibung, Versöhnung (SFVV) (Foundation Flight, Expulsion, Reconciliation) would like to bring back into focus. Deutschlandhaus is presently closed and will be redesigned to host the exhibition, documentation, and information center of the SFVV, planned to open in 2016. It will focus on flight and expulsion during the 20th century.


by Artur Żmijewski and Joanna Warsza


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Stresemannstrasse 90, D-10963 BerlinMore >

10th Berlin Biennale