Classicism and Modernity

With the opening of the rebuilt headquarters in Berlin, the Gütersloh media publisher Bertelsmann moved into its representative office in the federal capital. Behind the reconstructed neo-classical facade, at the noble address “Unter den Linden 1”, an ultra-modern event location was created that was supposed to meet the demands of the group represented in more than 60 countries.

The decision of the Berlin Senate to have Bertelsmann rebuild the commandant's office next to the Berlin Palace Bridge was the start of a new corporate era. After all, Bertelsmann wanted to create a forum for entrepreneurial and cultural life in the metropolis on the Spree with the opening of the new representative office in the capital of reunified Germany. The artistic design of the premises by Samuelis Baumgarte Art Consulting should take this into account. The wide-wall-like photographs by Bärbel Möllmann in the casino of the commandant's office, which can be found in the basement of the building, are accordingly representative. Prof. Heinz Mack devised large-format, colored wall paintings for the stairwell of the commandant's office. The installations in the club are by Stefan Hoderlein. The objects by the artist, who was born in Düsseldorf in 1960, consist of a series of seemingly infinite number of slides. Behind this is Hoderlein’s desire to capture as many moments in life as possible for eternity.

With its art and design concept for the former commandant's office, Bertelsmann makes a symbolic reference to the Museum Island in the immediate vicinity of the building, which dates back to 1695 and 1874. After all, the ensemble, which consists of five houses, has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1999.