Survey Staatliche Museen zu Berlin

The Ruins of Kočo: Traces of Wooden Architecture from the Ancient Silk Road

07.09.2016 to 08.01.2017
Museum für Asiatische Kunst

More than 100 years after the return of the last Berlin researchers from Central Asia (1914), great discoveries are still being made among the finds of that time. Painted wooden beams, some inscribed with Buddhist texts, which Albert Grünwedel brought back with him in 1903, saving them from use as firewood, have now been identified as pieces of a ceiling and door construction. This discovery led members of the museum staff to Xinjiang, to the temple city of Kočo (Chinese: Gaochang) near Turfan, in the Xinjiang Autonomous Region, China. There they searched for traces of wooden architecture and compared reports and photographs from the three Turfan expeditions with structures still visible at the location today. This project, funded by the Gerda Henkel Stiftung, has led to a new understanding of the monastery buildings, as is demonstrated in this exhibition.

The documentation of photographic material from yesterday and today and the accounts of researchers from 1902–1907 compared with contemporary observations afford rare glimpses into the work of modern scientists. The exhibition is also a preview of the Humboldt Forum: the unique objects that were found in the three buildings analyzed in Kočo will be shown in this exhibition and then in the Humboldt Forum in their new display context. Paintings, texts and sculptures that came to light in Buddhist and Manichaean monasteries, as well as architectural elements and everyday objects, can speak to us today in new ways.

Visitor entrance

Lansstraße 8 / Arnimallee 25
14195 Berlin


Sun 11:00 - 18:00
Mon closed
Tue 10:00 - 17:00
Wed 10:00 - 17:00
Thu 10:00 - 17:00
Fri 10:00 - 17:00
Sat 11:00 - 18:00

Opening times on public holidays Plan your visit
Last admission and ticket sales 30 minutes before closing time.

Please note that due to preparations for the transfer to the Humboldt Forum the Collection of South, Southeast, and Central Asian Art on the ground floor, that contains, amongst others, the famous 'Turfan' collection as well as art from India, have been closed since 11 January 2016.

Extended opening time Fri 6 to Sun 8 January 2017
Over the weekend of 7–8 January, the Ethnologisches Museum and the Museum für Asiatische Kunst will open their doors for the last time at their current location, before preparing in readiness for the move to Humboldt Forum. For this reason, the opening hours on this weekend will be extended and special events will be on offer.
Fri 6 January 2017: 10 a.m. - 8 p.m.
Sat 7 January 2017: 10 a.m. - 8 p.m.
Sun 8 January 2017 : 10 a.m. - 8 p.m.

Museum Europäischer Kulturen
8,00 EUR Concessions 4,00

Annual ticket Basic permanent exhibitions, certain times
25,00 EUR

Museumspass Berlin
29,00 EUR Concessions 14,50
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Annual ticket Classic temporary exhibitions not included
50,00 EUR Concessions 25,00

Annual ticket Classic Plus all exhibitions
100,00 EUR Concessions 50,00

Annual membership Staatliche Museen zu Berlin
from just 25,00 EUR
Annual tickets

Tel 030 - 266 42 42 42 (Mon - Fri, 9 am - 4 pm)
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