Bode-Museum, Museum Island Berlin, 
General restoration

Heinz Tesar, Vienna | Hella Rolfes, Berlin

Between 1999 and 2005, the Bode Museum was thoroughly repaired, restructured and restored to meet the contemporary demands placed on modern museum use. A constant indicator for successful restoration and adaptation of the building were the handling of this historically valuable structure in accordance to the guidelines for monumental restoration, the development of customised, structurally-specific and substance-friendly concepts for the required technical upgrade and cautious structural addition to the building.

The museum was re-opened to the public in November 2006.


Bodestraße 1-3, 10178 Berlin

Stiftung Preußischer Kulturbesitz represented by
Bundesamt für Bauwesen und Raumordnung

Staatliche Museen Berlin, SMB-SPK

Heinz Tesar, Wien | Hella Rolfes, Berlin

Contractworld.award 2008
Third prize in the categoy of education and culture

Project Management
ibb, Prof. Burkhardt GmbH & Co, Berlin

Site Supervision
PMS, Project Consult Engineering,Atelier Christoph Fischer bis 2002

Structural Engineer
GSE – Ing.-GmbH Saar, Enseleit und Partner, Berlin

Lighting Consultants
Ch. Keller Design AG, St. Gallen, Schweiz

Services Engineers
pbr – Planungsbüro Rohling AG, Berlin

Fire Protection
Ingenieurbüro Preiß, Berlin

Building physics
Ing.-Büro Prof. Axel C. Rahn, Berlin

Dipl.-Ing. Thomas Fütterer; Berlin

Guidance system
Polyform, Berlin

1997 - 2005

2000 - 2005

Scope of Services
LPH. 2 - 5, §15 HOAI
Gross floor area
25.280 sqm

Net floor area
11.081 sqm

Gross volume
169.000 cbm

Total costs
98,7 MIO EUR

The Bode Museum was built from 1897 to 1994 as the Kaiser-Friedrich-Museum by Ernst Eberhard von Ihne, the court architect under Kaiser Wilhelm II. It was built as a museum without any artifical sources of light. The Bode Museum forms the head of the museum complex on the northwest tip of the island. As a part of this unique structural and cultural complex, it has belonged to the UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1999. Outstanding is not only the urban location, but also the architectural meaning of the museum. The Wilhelmian Neo-Baroque style structure is one of the most important architectural monuments of the late historism period.

The museum is named after its intellectual creator and patron, Wilhelm von Bode. He was the director of the sculpture and painting collection and later the Director General of the Royal Museums. With his unique knowledge of the art world, he contributed significantly to the development and expansion of the Berlin collections. He was particularly interested in works from the Italian Renaissance. The creation of the Kaiser-Friedrich-Museum provided an appropriate housing for the worldwide unique sculpture and painting collections. The collections were presented in a completely new setting. Bode developed a unique exhibit concept which did away with the separation of art genres. He introduced so-called style rooms, in which each room contained pictures, sculptures, furniture and other original architectural fragments of a particular artistic period.

Between 1999 and 2005, the Bode Museum was thoroughly repaired, restructured and restored according to the guidelines for monumental restorations. The installation of modern technologies ensures that the essential demands for modern museum operation were fulfilled. A new stairwell with a lift opened up additional exhibit space on the ground floor and courtyard level, ensuring barrier-free access throughout the entire building. Four of the five inner courtyards are now a part of the visitor’s tour.

Realisation of a new room under the small cupola created the prerequisites for future connection of the Bode Museum to the so-called Archeological Promenade. This is part of the Master plan, which forsees unterground connection of all museums on Museum Island.