Museum on Site (main site) Kids, Students, Teachers Online Showcases Blogerim (blog)

W. Michael Blumenthal Academy
of the Jewish Museum Berlin

Daniel Libeskind’s Design "Zwischenräume"

Construction of the Academy of the Jewish Museum Berlin
© Jewish Museum Berlin

The W. Michael Blumenthal Academy is based on Daniel Libeskind’s design "Zwischenräume." Located on the opposite side of the road, the new building complex comprises three inclined cubes. The cube form is a variation on a theme found in the Garden of Exile and the Glass Courtyard. Daniel Libeskind thus links the Academy to the existing museum architecture both in context and in expression of form.

The first cube, which forms the entrance to the W. Michael Blumenthal Academy, penetrates the façade of the building and creates a counterpart to the Jewish Museum’s main entrance in the "Kollegienhaus" and to the head of the Libeskind Building on the opposite side of the Lindenstraße. It is illuminated by skylights in the form of the Hebrew letters Alef and Bet, relating to the education and research work at this site. In the hall’s interior, two further cubes tilted towards one another house the auditorium and the library. These wood-paneled cubes are evocative of transport crates on the one hand and Noah’s Ark on the other. The cubes symbolize the transmission of legacies from around the world to the Jewish Museum Berlin – the Academy houses these legacies and makes them accessible to a wider public. Between the three tilted cubes, an inspirational space emerges that allows diverse views both into the hall’s interior and onto the future town square outside. These "Zwischenräume" visually link the Academy and the former flower market to the "Kollegienhaus" with its Glass Courtyard and the Libeskind Building.

Entrance of the Academy of the Jewish Museum Berlin (July 2013)
© Jewish Museum Berlin, photo: Jens Ziehe

Besides the auditorium and open-access library with adjoining reading room, the W. Michael Blumenthal Academy houses rooms for education work – work space for guest students, offices, seminar and meeting rooms. Through the library cube, a bypass separated from the open-access library by a glass wall leads into the archive area with archive depots, work spaces for visiting scientists, offices, and seminar rooms. The "Diaspora Garden" can be found in the courtyard between the building elements.

The Diaspora Garden
A New Site for Educational Programs
Stay in touch