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Press release

Retrospective and Perspective: Exhibition "Peter Behrens in Berlin and Brandenburg"

Titelbild Ausstellung Peter Behrens

From the 27th of April to the 25th of May, the exhibition "Peter Behrens in Berlin and Brandenburg" invites visitors to explore the architectural legacy of the pioneer of modernism in a new way. Using a variety of presentation methods, the exhibition with its multiple exhibits opens up a stimulating discourse between retrospective and future possibilities of architecture.

Behind the working title "Peter Behrens in Berlin and Brandenburg – Retrospective and Perspective" is a teaching and research project of the University of Applied Sciences Potsdam under the direction of Prof. Dr. Silvia Malcovati and Prof. Bernd Bess, in cooperation with Prof. em. Hartmut Frank of HafenCity University Hamburg and the architectural photographer Maximilian Meisse.

The exhibits in the exhibition are the result of studies and research carried out over the last two decades at various German and Italian universities, in particular in the architecture programme at the University of Applied Sciences Potsdam. Prof. Dr. Silvia Malcovati and Prof. Bernd Bess developed new, research-oriented teaching methods in the subject "Fundamentals of Architectural Design", with which students examined the works of Peter Behrens in Berlin and Brandenburg as part of project studies.
The analytical drawings, architectural models and systematic photographic studies presented in the exhibition are the result of in-depth historical source studies and empirical field research. Their aim is to go beyond the simple reproduction or replication of existing buildings by Peter Behrens and to gain new insights. Learning research, documentation, inventory and visualisation techniques using the example of Behrens' buildings gave students the tools to take up well-founded positions in the discussion about our architectural heritage. In view of the need to rethink building processes, this debate is becoming increasingly important.

About the exhibition
Using various methods of architectural representation, the exhibition transports Peter Behrens' multifaceted work from the past into the present in order to utilise it for the future.
In addition to the teaching and research project, the exhibition in the breathtaking light hall of the Peter Behrens Building also presents designs and scenarios for the future development of the site by renowned architectural firms that are shaping the future around the Behrens Building. Thanks to the cooperation and support of the DIEAG group of companies , the exhibition has been enriched with historical material about the Peter Behrens Building in Oberschöneweide. In addition to original graphics and design objects, models of all the buildings realised by Behrens in the Berlin-Brandenburg area are on display, as well as designs and scenarios for the future development of the area on Behrens-Ufer.

Prof. Dr. Eva Schmitt-Rodermund, President of the University of Applied Sciences Potsdam: "Architecture is more than just buildings; it is a living testimony to our history, an expression of culture and identity. This exhibition focuses on the work of Peter Behrens and its significance for the Berlin and Brandenburg region. The exhibits not only represent stages of extensive research work on an extremely versatile and artistically talented personality, they also show the results of students from two universities engaging with the work and designs of a great urban planner."

Highlights of the exhibition are the keynote speeches and discussions on the 24th of May 2024 by Sergei Tchoban, architect and partner at Tchoban Voss, Dr. Hans-Dieter Nägelke, Director of the Architecture Museum of the Technical University, and Dr. Antonia Brauchle, Head of Monument Protection Treptow-Köpenick.

An exhibition catalogue "Peter Behrens in Berlin and Brandenburg" will be published in two volumes to accompany the exhibition.
Peter Behrens in Berlin and Brandenburg - Volume 1:
ISBN: 978-3-947796-13-7
URN: urn:nbn:de:kobv:525-33902

Peter Behrens in Berlin and Brandenburg - Volume 2:
ISBN: 978-3-947796-14-4
URN: urn:nbn:de:kobv:525-33912


  • Scientific management: Prof. Dr. Silvia Malcovati, Prof. Bernd Bess & Prof. Hartmut Frank
  • Scientific coordination: Emilia Machleid, Ivonne Frey & Phoebe Vogler, Helene Schön
  • Teaching staff: Jens Weßel, Roberto Zitelli, Michael Fenske, Jan Niklas Schmeing
  • Architectural photography: Maximilian Meisse
  • Students Department of CITY | BUILDING | CULTURE, Architecture and Urban Design programme, 2022-2024: Andreas Aisenbrey, Maxim Blacher, Olga Born, Julia Boger, Gideon Bramwells, Daniel Chudicek, Leonie Ettmüller, Monika Elendt, Tabea Gregor, Silvia Grossinger, Daniel Günther, Peer Günther, Jakob Hafke, Luisa Haselbach, Tobias Hofmann, Fiona Holm, Menso Karpf, Raphael Kasinske, Woochul Kim, Paul Krüger, Martin Lange, Chloé Le Mézo, Jan Matthaeus Mahler, Simon Marchese, Stephanie Marmillot, David Möller, Janaina Marquart, Phuong Binh Nguyen, Elmar Nitzborn, Jean Noukon, Luna Poppenhagen, Chantal Reichl, Alexander Reznik, Julia Richter, Julia Riedel, Leon Roloff, Sanjar Sabitov, Leif Schmidt, Helene Schön, Lena Sillinger, Reto Schaffarczyk, Lajana Tiedke, Nina Tiemann, Linda Tran, Nicolas Von Dühren, David Weber, Winona Witte, Luca Wloch, Maximilian Woharek

About Peter Behrens
Peter Behrens (1868 – 1940) was a multi-talented architect and is considered the most important industrial designer of the early 20th century. He saw industrial development as an important element of social change, which is why his designs were based on the fusion of art and technology. Behrens was a successful painter, graphic artist and typographer. He was a pioneer in the development and realisation of a holistically conceived design in the sense of a "corporate identity". As a teacher of Walter Gropius, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and, for a short time, Le Corbusier, he was a key pioneer of Bauhaus art.

27th of April – 25th of May 2024
Thu – Fri from 2 pm – 8 pm | Sat – Sun from 11 am – 5 pm
Guided tour: Saturday, the 11th of May at 2 pm
and on request | Registration:

Opening: Saturday, the 27th of April 2024 at 5 pm

Keynote speeches & discussion:
24th of May 2024 | 6.00 pm – 8.00 pm
Sergei Tchoban | Tchoban Foundation
Dr. Hans-Dieter Nägelke | Architecture Museum TU-Berlin
Dr. Antonia Brauchle | Lower Monument Protection Authority Treptow-Köpenick

Where: Peter-Behrens-Bau | Lichthalle
Ostendstraße 1-4
12459 Berlin
Berlin Germany

Scientific contact of the University of Applied Sciences Potsdam
Prof. Dr. Silvia Malcovati
Professor of Design and Urban Planning
T +49 331 580-4213

Prof. Dipl.-Ing. Bernd Bess
Professor of Fundamentals of Design
T +49 331 580-4247

Press contact DIEAG
Dr. Gregor Keck
Schlüterstraße 36, 10629 Berlin
T +49 30 22 44 50 560

About the BE-U | Behrens-Ufer
Berlin-based DIE Deutsche Immobilien Entwicklungs AG (DIEAG) is planning to build one of the most innovative and sustainable commercial city districts in the world. More than 1 billion euros will be invested in the 10-hectare former inner-city industrial site, located in the Berlin South-East growth corridor. The attractive mix of historic and new buildings offers a total of 234,000 m² of rental space for businesses. The extensive site is located in the direct neighbourhood of the University of Applied Sciences Berlin. The spacious premises are particularly suitable for research and development, laboratories and high-tech production. As a knowledge hub, the BE-U will expand Schöneweide as a centre of the future and generate synergy effects. The aim is to create an energy self-sufficient urban neighbourhood that goes far beyond the usual ESG standards. The BE-U is currently scheduled for completion by 2029.

Parallel to the exhibition, the Peter-Behrens-Bau in Oberschöneweide will become the focal point of Berlin Design Week 2024 from the 27th of April to the 5th of May 2024. Visitors can expect a varied programme of exhibitions, talks and interactive workshops that will provide insights into innovative design concepts.

About DIE Deutsche Immobilien Entwicklungs AG
DIE Deutsche Immobilien Entwicklungs AG (DIEAG) is one of the leading property project developers and asset managers in the German-speaking region with a project volume of around 2.5 billion euros (as of March 2024). Founded in 2015, DIEAG stands for holistically designed and implemented property projects and focuses on the development of large-scale residential and commercial properties for sale in global sales to institutional clients with the aim of long-term portfolio management. DIEAG is committed to sustainable investment strategies in the spirit of responsible corporate governance in accordance with ESG guidelines.

Potsdam University of Applied Sciences
Innovative, future-orientated and practical: at the University of Applied Sciences Potsdam, we are working to help shape the world of tomorrow in teaching, practice and research. More than 3,600 students study and conduct research in the five departments of Social and Educational Sciences, CITY I BUILDING I CULTURE, Civil Engineering, Design and Information Sciences. The three strategic profile lines "Digital Transformation – Urban Future", "Educating Society" and "Design – Build – Preserve" address societal challenges and questions about the future across all faculties. Together with partners in the Berlin-Brandenburg science region and in Germany and abroad, a wide range of ideas and innovative solutions are developed.


Prof. Dr. Silvia Malcovati
Professor of Design and Urban Planning
Prof. Bernd Bess
Professor for Fundamentals of Design
Head of the Architecture and Urban DesignProgramme