The modern concervation of the Neues Museum in Berlin
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In the spring of 2011, David Chipperfield – an architect from London – received the prestigious Mies van der Rohe Award for the best architectural object implemented within the previous two years in Europe for conserving and rebuilding the Neues Museum on the Berlin’s Museum Island. First and foremost, the British architect’s manner and method of rebuilding this object were appreciated. The Neues Museum – built in the mid-19th century, ruined during World War II – includes a number of elements showing the effects of military operations: traces of bullets fired from Soviet soldiers’ rifles in the last days of the war found in the external elevations, destroyed fragments of walls with polychromies in the interiors, fragments of plaster peeling off, destroyed columns or structural ceilings, dirty, unpainted walls. Contemporary interventions, concrete pillars, columns in the Sarcophagus Hall, new entrance openings, new concrete structural ceilings, floors and rooms were clearly separated. The destroyed parts of this building were not reconstructed but rebuilt in a brand new contemporary setting. This is the main principle of conservation works in this object.
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