Membership Card of the Germanisches Nationalmuseum 2017

Wartime in the National Museum 1914 - 1918

24th November 2016 - 26th November 2017

In remembrance of the First World War, the GNM has set out on a journey of discovery – not only into its own past, but also through its holdings to locate cultural history testaments to the wartime era, because despite the turmoil of war, the “institution founded on the patriotic sentiment of the German people” actively strove to collect artefacts. In a studio exhibition in the 20th century collection, the museum is showing objects - politically charged but also surprising - typical of the period between 1914 and 1918, which it amassed as one of a total of 217 German war collections.

These items, which were acquired directly during the First World War, are supplemented by further exhibits from the period, which the museum has been collecting for more than 100 years. Many are being shown for the first time. “The Drinker”, for example, a painting by Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, exemplifies the artist’s point of view. Alongside this, personal photo albums, posters, postcards and caricatures demonstrate the Germans’ perception of themselves at that time, as well as their standing abroad. Together with porcelain dinner sets, furniture and wall panels featuring patriotic themes and quotes, they are representative of the typical soldier, civilian, patriot, enemy or child, and thus ultimately reveal - in fragments - mental attitudes.



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