Potsdam Museum - Forum for Art and History
One of the city’s most historic and central locales, the Potsdam Museum provides both an anchor for travelers, who would like to learn about heritage and traditions, and a central headquarter from which any visitor can plan their holiday and outings. Situated in the Old Town Hall, which was built between 1753 and 1755, the museum is a research institution as well as a showcase for the region. The space houses nearly 300,000 objects — making it the largest collection of culture and art in the State of Brandenburg.
Founded in 1909, the museum, which covers some 1,300 square meters, was redesigned and renovated in 2012. Inside the baroque building, the history of Potsdam and the larger region open up to you in the form of well-curated exhibitions. There are both permanent installations and a rotation of special showings.
The museum’s largest collections provide a unique view of the city through the lens of the 19th - 21st centuries. This era is depicted with pieces dedicated to photography, the arts, military objects and memorabilia, everyday life (including applied art), fine arts, and printing. However, there is also a large scientific museum library, and there are other permanent exhibitions that serve to educate patrons about the area’s dense history, which spans more 1,000 years.
Those exhibitions include “Potsdam and the 20th of July, 1944” which details a plan to assassinate Adolf Hitler. Another installation — “Potsdam. A City Makes History” — tells the overall story of the city since its first documented mention. The museum’s website describes the exhibition as such: “The narrative is not strictly chronological, but thematic, sometimes over several centuries. Which developments, persons, relationships have influenced Potsdam since its first documentary mention in 993 until today? Should Potsdam be limited to its role as a royal city, as a garrison town? What significance did the bourgeoisie have in art, culture and urban design?”
The museum offers workshops, lectures, tours, concerts, festivals, and activities for the kids. And, after a day of learning about Potsdam and the larger region, take a moment to reflect on the experience inside the museum’s Café Central. This is an ideal place to talk while enjoying lemonade, salads, coffee, and sandwiches.