Jewish Museum in Berlin designed to disorient and create anxiety to visitors

Updated: Jul 21, 2020

Weekly Architectural Insight

  • Berlin Jüdisches Museum designed by architect Daniel Libeskind is one of the world undisputed museums and architectural gems.

  • It is located next to the former Baroque courthouse Kollegienhaus designed by Philipp Gerlach, that served as a Jewish department.

  • The museum is a stunning architectural achievement of cultural identity with an attempt of integrating physically and spiritually the meaning of the Holocaust into the memory and consciousness of people of Berlin.

  • This lightning-bolt shaped building is connected with the old building, where the new structure itself seems like a separated building but not having a formal exterior entrance, is connected by three underground passageways.

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Plan View of the Museum Structure

The visitor must endure the anxiety of hiding and losing the sense of direction before having to choose between the three underground routes.

Looking at it from a birds view some would assume the interior would be as straight forward as its exterior, a zig-zag corridor. However, the interior spaces are extremely complex. Libeskind formulated promenade leads for people to go through galleries, empty spaces and always get into dead ends.