In memoriam: photographer Astrid Kirchherr (1938-2020). “In a dingy, disreputable Hamburg bar, amid the noise and squalor, she detected something beautiful.”  (The New York Times, 5/16/20; The Guardian, 5/19/20)

The bottom half of Kang Sunkoo’s Statue of Limitations, an 11-meter-high sculpture referencing Germany’s colonial past, has just been installed at the Humboldt Forum in Berlin. The upper half will be placed in the city’s Afrikanisches Viertel, so-called for its streets that were in named in the colonial era.  (London Review of Books, 10/4/19; The Art Newspaper, 5/18/20)

Germany’s museums are opening back up—with online ticketing, social distancing, plexiglass shields, and a lot of disinfectant.  (artnet, 4/22/20;  The Art Newspaper, 5/4/20)

The Old Masters Picture Gallery gets a major upgrade at the Semperbau in Dresden.  (The Art Newspaper, 2/27/20; artnet, 2/27/20)

“In her etchings, prints and sculptures, [Käthe] Kollwitz continues to remind us what it means to be an artist and the possibilities of art in the most troubling of times.”  (Lithub, 2/14/20)

In 1926, architect and activist Margarete Schütte-Lihotzky designed the first fitted kitchen, to simplify food preparation in close quarters for (especially) working-class women. Her “Frankfurt Kitchen” was just the start of a long and eventful career. (The Wire, 1/26/20; MoMA, 2/14/20)

Ai Weiwei has some choice words for Germany, and for Berlin taxi drivers in particular.  (The Guardian, 1/21/20)

Ceramics in the Bauhaus tradition are thriving at the Maria Laach Abbey in western Germany.  (Deutsche Welle, 12/20/19)

“Making Marvels” at the Metropolitan Museum of Art is an early modern “parade of science and splendor,” including the exquisite Dresden Green.  (The New York Times, 12/19/19)

String theory is the “relatively new big idea around which all the old big ideas can coalesce” at Anselm Kiefer’s new exhibition, “Superstrings, Runes, the Norns, Gordian Knot,” at White Cube in London.  (The Telegraph, 11/19/19;  The Guardian, 11/25/19

The jewel heist from Dresden’s historic Green Vault was one of the largest ever, and a blow to Saxon and German cultural pride.  (artnet, 11/26/19; The Art Newspaper, 11/26/19;  The Economist, 11/28/19)

Locally printed “emergency money” from World War I and the economic crisis thereafter combated cash shortages with artistic flair.  (The Observer, 9/28/19)

A colorful, GDR-era mural by Josep Renau celebrating “man’s relation to nature and technology” has been restored “in all its pixelated glory” in Erfurt.  (The Guardian, 11/3/19; The Art Newspaper, 12/2/19)

In memoriam: Ingo Maurer (1932–2019), “Promethean in his delivery of illumination—fashioning lamps out of shattered crockery, scribbled memos, holograms, tea strainers and incandescent bulbs with feathered wings.”  (The New York Times, 10/24/19; Azure, 10/29/19)

“Beyond Bauhaus: Modernism in Britain 1933–66” is now showing at the RIBA in London. “The show casts a necessarily broad net,” writes Oliver Wainwright, “given our introverted island wasn’t particularly receptive to the radical cocktail of machine-made functionalism, abstraction and socialism.”  (The Guardian, 10/1/19)

There’s still time to see “Point of No Return,” a survey of Wende-era work by GDR artists at the Museum der bildenden Künste in Leipzig. Then head to the Düsseldorf Kunstpalast for “Utopia and Demise,” among the few major surveys of GDR art mounted since the Wende.   (The New York Times, 7/24/19; The Independent, 9/19/19)

The Bauhaus may have never had a proper music department, but “musical thinking permeated the lives of its students and faculty.”  (The New York Times, 8/22/19)

The “stylishly straightforward” Bauhaus Museum Dessau opened on September 9. “Our maxim was ‘more with less,'” says architect Roberto Gonzalez.  The Wall Street Journal, 8/9/19; artnet, 9/9/19; The Economist, 9/18/19)

Berlin’s “rebuilt Stadtschloss has become a national monument, but an accidental one—not a legacy defining grand projet, but the product of a series of actions with unintended consequences. It is a German monument developed in a very un-German way.”  (Financial Times, 9/13/19)

“Thousands of artworks from the Nazi period lie hidden away in storage depots,” both in Germany and the U.S. Is it time for the public to see them?  (Spiegel Online – International, 8/14/19)

“Mounting an exhibition containing swastikas, propaganda posters, photographs of Nazi rallies and clips of Leni Riefenstahl…was bound to generate controversy.” By that measure, the Design Museum Den Bosch’s exhibition on “Design of the Third Reich” does not disappoint.  (artnet, 9/17/19; The New York Times, 9/17/19)

“They complain that they do not have enough money to do research on these objects to take proper care of them…but they had enough money to build a castle in the middle of Berlin.” The debate over the Humboldt Forum and the repatriation of African artifacts continues.  (The New York Times, 9/4/19)