Back to Berlin – And What It Means to Be a Curator Today

From 2 to 4 June 2019, the CODART congress took place for the first time in Berlin. In partnership with the Staatliche Museen zu Berlin, we organized three days in which we took a close look at the permanent collections of Dutch and Flemish art of all the museums we visited and reflected on the status of the curator’s profession. The theme of CODART 22, which you can read here, was “Back to Berlin – And What It Means to Be a Curator Today.” What are the questions that confront us as curators today? And can we find the answers to them in our museum roots and our art-historical roots, in which Berlin has played such an important role?

Program

The Gemäldegalerie in Berlin possesses what is undoubtedly one of the most important collections of early Netherlandish paintings and seventeenth-century baroque paintings from the Low Countries. We aimed to give CODART members an opportunity to study the collection from close by. After the plenary program on Monday, we spent the afternoon in the galleries of the Gemäldegalerie, looking at the paintings in smaller groups. The museum was closed to the public, which meant that we could study the artworks without distraction, together with the museum’s curators and other specialists. In the lunch break we made a brief excursion to Italian art: the museum offered us a unique opportunity to enjoy a private viewing of the exhibition Mantegna and Bellini. Masters of the Renaissance.

On Tuesday morning we were the guests of the Bode Museum on the Museum Island, where we held the Speakers’ Corner of the congress. On Monday and on Tuesday afternoon we organized study visits to the Gemäldegalerie, the Kupferstichkabinett, the Bode Museum, and Schloss Charlottenburg.

Optional visits to Jagdschloss Grunewald, Sanssouci, and Schwerin

Optional visits were offered on Sunday and Wednesday. For instance, on Sunday some participants opted to see a special exhibition of paintings by Cranach at Jagdschloss Grunewald. Alternatively, there was the option to visit the Picture Gallery at Sanssouci and study the remarkable collection of Flemish and Dutch baroque paintings. On Wednesday 5 June we offered an optional full-day excursion to the beautiful city of Schwerin, where we visited the Staatliches Museum Schwerin and the Castle of Schwerin.

Please find the program on this page.