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Masterpieces from the Seraglio
The Albums of Heinrich Friedrich von Diez

03.06.2013 to 01.09.2013

Among the many treasures held at the Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin (Berlin’s state library) are the albums of the Prussian envoy Heinrich Friedrich von Diez (1751-1817). They contain approximately 450 paintings, drawings, and calligraphies, as well as unfinished sketches and study sheets which Diez acquired in Constantinople in the period from 1786 to 1790. The majority of these artworks date back to the 14th and 15th century and were made in Persia and Central Asia. The diversity and quality of the Diez albums make them one of the most important collections of Persian-Mongolian art in the world. The only existing collection of comparable stature can be found in the library of the Topkapi Seraglio, the former palace of the Ottoman rulers, from where several of the pictures in Diez’s albums also originate.

The exhibition presents a selection of high-quality paintings along with other highlights of Oriental book art from the Diez collection. The exhibition also includes a selection of contemporary documents, diplomatic correspondence, and manuscripts which reveal Diez’s significance as a diplomat and Orientalist.

James-Simon-Galerie, Bodestraße
10178 Berlin

partially wheelchair accessible
Please note: Pergamonmuseum is exclusively entered through James-Simon-Galerie!
Site plan: Entrance to the Pergamonmuseum and Neues Museum (PDF)

All groups meet at the information desk at the upper foyer in James-Simon-Galerie, entering by using the big stairway.
Advice for group visits to the Pergamonmuseum an the Neues Museum (PDF)

Due to a technical issue, the lift is out of service until further notice, meaning the Museum für Islamische Kunst is not currently wheelchair accessible. The major architectural exhibits – such as the Processional Way, featuring the Ishtar Gate and the Market Gate of Miletus – are still accessible to people with mobility issues. 


U-Bahn: Museumsinsel (U5)
S-Bahn: Friedrichstraße, Hackescher Markt
Tram: Am Kupfergraben, Hackescher Markt
Bus: Staatsoper, Lustgarten, Friedrichstraße

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