Art, Culture, Media and Denazification in Germany

Workshop 18.02.17, 11 am

As an important part of postwar German society, the process of denazification revolved around the question of guilt and responsibility, as well as its trivialization and suppression. This workshop focuses on the denazification of cultural life in the years after World War II. It therefore concerns - in a symptomatic manner - the history of Haus der Kunst, which was built according to the plans of Hitler's favorite architect Paul Ludwig Troost and opened in 1937 as the "Haus der Deutschen Kunst". From 1937 to 1945, the building served as an instrument of propaganda and as the authoritative institution for Nazi art policy.

Workshop participants, through historical documents including the denazification court files of protagonists, such as the architect's widow Gerdy Troost, the sculptor Arno Breker, and Hitler's personal photographer Heinrich Hoffmann will gain insight into the history of the institution. What influence did - and does – the political assessment of these prominent cases have on the image of cultural actors in the postwar period? In addition, the workshop is designed to examine sensitive issues such as Nazi art looting and restitution from a contemporary perspective. In a closing tour of the exhibition "Postwar - Art Between the Pacific and Atlantic, 1945-1965", we will look at how the question of guilt and responsibility was investigated and treated by artists from different countries during the period between 1945 and 1965.


Felizitas Raith
is a historian and worked for many years at the Max Mannheimer Studienzentrum Dachau, most recently as educational director. Since 2013, she has been a research associate at the NS-Dokumentationszentrum München (Munich Documentation Centre for the History of National Socialism) in the field of education.

Thomas Rink studied modern history and philosophy in Bochum and Potsdam. In 1999, and from 2004 to 2006, he worked at the Gedenkstätte Haus der Wannsee-Konferenz and from 2001 to 2002 he was a research associate at the Deutsches Historisches Museum for the exhibition "Holocaust". From 2003 to 2005, Rink lectured on Jewish Studies at the University of Potsdam. Since 2006 he has been a research associate at the NS-Dokumentationszentrum München in the field of education.

Sabine Brantl is a historian. She studied in Munich and Vienna, and has headed the historical archive at Haus der Kunst since 2005. Since 2014, she has worked there as a curator. Brantl has cocurated exhibitions including "Histories in Conflict: Haus der Kunst and the Ideological Use of Art 1937-1955" (2012), and is responsible for the Archive Gallery a permanent exhibition space dedicated to the history of Haus der Kunst (since 2014). In 2007, she published her monograph "Haus der Kunst, Munich: A Place and its History under National Socialism."

Workshop for teachers
Monday, 13.02.17, 2:30 pm
Duration: 2.5 hours

free entry

Workshops for pupils from the ninth grade
to be booked upon request
Duration: 4 hours

4 € (incl. exhibition admission)

Registration: archiv (at) 

A workshop supported by:

Heinrich Hoffmann (left), Gerdy Troost and Adolf Hitler at Haus der Deutschen Kunst on June, 20, 1942. © Bayerische Staatsbibliothek München/Bildarchiv

Stretch your view

Stretch your view


Postwar / Trailer

The trailer gives an impression of the extensive exhibition and the works on view. In eight dramatic chapters, the exhibition guides visitors through the first 20 years following the end of World War II. MORE

Picture Gallery


Postwar: Art Between the Pacific and the Atlantic, 1945–1965 - Exhibition Guide


Teachers’ Guide

Teachers’ Guide for the exhibition “Postwar: Art between the Pacific and the Atlantic, 1945-1965”. MORE


Postwar / exhibition film

The video allows a closer look at the works in the exhibition and its structure, commented by the three co-curators of the exhibition, Okwui Enwezor, Katy Siegel and Ulrich Wilmes. MORE


"Postwar – Art between the Pacific and the Atlantic, 1945-1965"

21.05 – 24.05.14

Convened at Haus der Kunst in collaboration with the Tate Modern in 21-24 May, 2014, the "Postwar — Art between the Pacific and Atlantic, 1945-1965" conference is an attempt to reconsider and re-examine the two decades following World War II. MORE