Currently, only selected museums, exhibitions and institutes of the Staatliche Museen zu Berlin are open to the public. Read more

Films of the Museum für Islamische Kunst

 

Alone in the Museum

Alone in the Museum | Museum für Islamische Kunst with Stefan Weber

An exclusive guided tour through the highlights of the Museum für Islamische Kunst in the Pergamonmuseum with the director Stefan Weber himself? No problem!

With subtitles.

Length: 21:13 Minuten

 

History

Dealing with images in countries influenced by Islam

This video shows how images have been regarded in history by countries influenced by Islam. The video does not try to lead to a definitive conclusion of the issue. Definite conclusions here are probably impossible. However, let’s looking closer at that topic and notice how complex the issue is…

This video emerged form the TAMAM-Project: www.tamam-projekt.de.

Length: 3:40 Minutes
Production: Museum für Islamische Kunst / Stefan Matlik

The Abbasid Empire

During the rule of the Abbasids, the second dynasty of Islamic history, arts and culture reached an impressive diversity and sophistication. Some consider these centuries a “golden age,” for it witnessed developments and achievements in the arts, in society, and in the sciences. The realm further developed into a global hot spot with trade connections to every direction. Also, this contact fostered the spread and invention of technologies, like the proliferation of paper. 

Length: 3:44 minutes
Production: Museum für Islamische Kunst / Stefan Matlik

The Umayyad Empire

The new religion of Islam was spread across North Africa as far as today's Spain and eastwards into Central Asia. This geographic extension was led by the first dynasty of rulers, the Umayyads. During their time, important works of art were created, like the dome of the rock in Jerusalem or castles like Mshatta, whose façade is one of the Museum’s exhibits. Today these works are seen as the formative accomplishments that mark the beginning of Islamic arts.

Length: 4:16 minutes
Production: Museum für Islamische Kunst / Stefan Matlik

Early Islamic Coinage

For a long time, coins were the only form of money. This is the reason that coinage is a prime space for the powerful ruler. Even today, symbols of a state, of government or the sovereign, for example in the United Kingdom Queen Elizabeth II., are depicted on money. A change in coin design is always important, because it shows a new power. In the 7th century, the caliph ʿAbd al-Malik took exactly this decision to coin a new expression of power.

Length: 1:42 minutes
Production: Museum für Islamische Kunst / Stefan Matlik

Mevlana Dschelal ad-din Rumi

The city of Konya in today's Turkey is closely connected with the name Mevlana Jalal ad-Din Rumi. In the 13th century, the religious scholar Rumi lived in Konya, where he developed his mystical philosophy, a particular direction of Sufism. Mevlana means translated "our master". The Mevlevi order and the "dancing dervishes" with their meditative turns to mystical music still refer to Rumi today. 

Length: 3:36 Minutes
Production: Museum für Islamische Kunst / Stefan Matlik

Introduction Early Capitals of Islamic Culture

The Museum für Islamische Kunst (Museum of Islamic Art) of the Staatliche Museen zu Berlin (National Museums in Berlin) now presents its ground-breaking exhibition on the early urban heritage of Islam, first shown 2014 in the Museum for Islamic Civilization in Sharjah, UAE, in Riadh, Saudi Arabia, from February to May 2016.

Length: 3:40 Minutes
Produktion: Museum für Islamische Kunst / Stefan Matlik

Europe and the knotted carpet

The interwoven history between Europe, the Near and Middle East can be traced through magnificent carpets. Since the 13th century, knotted carpets have been imported into Europe. Here they were collected in church treasures, at courts and later by rich citizens to show wealth, sophistication and the love of art of their owners.

Length: 3:44 Minutes
Production: Museum für Islamische Kunst / Stefan Matlik

Samarra - Centre of the World 101 Years of Archaeological Research on the Tigris

Marking the 100th anniversary of excavations at the site, the Museum für Islamische Kunst (Museum of Islamic Art) presents an exhibition on the legendary royal city of Samarra, which lay approx. 120 km north of Bagdad on the banks of the Tigris, and which served as the government capital of the powerful Abbasid Caliphate from 836 to 892. Samarra boasted one of most elaborate city plans in the world at the time. With its gigantic palaces, mosques, walled hunting parks, polo fields, and horse racing courses it stretched to an astonishing length of almost 50 km.

Prominent ruins were excavated from 1911 to 1913 by the German archaeologist and Orientalist, Ernst Herzfeld. It was the first scientific excavation expressly dedicated to uncovering a site dating from the Islamic period. The exhibition presented a large selection of the finds that made their way to the Berlin museums under the then prevailing antiquities law, by which the found objects were divided up, with half retained by the local country and half removed by the country responsible for financing and conducting the dig. Among the objects on display are wall paintings, stucco, and wood panelling, which once adorned the walls of palaces. Also on show are lusterware ceramics, Chinese porcelain, and cut glass: testaments of the city's innovative artisanship and far-reaching trade links. The exhibition is enriched by a selection of historical excavation photographs taken by Ernst Herzfeld. They amount to important documents of the ruins, but also depict the landscape and everyday life at the dig.

 

Samarra - Centre of the World 101 Years of Archaeological Research on the Tigris - Interview Stefan Weber

Length: 3:38 minutes
Production: Museum für Islamische Kunst

 

Samarra - Centre of the World 101 Years of Archaeological Research on the Tigris - Interview Julia Gonella I

Length: 3:03 minutes
Production: Museum für Islamische Kunst

Samarra - Centre of the World 101 Years of Archaeological Research on the Tigris - Interview Julia Gonella II

Length: 1:11 minutes
Production: Museum für Islamische Kunst

 

 

Objects and Techniques

Aatifi - Calligraphy

Mysterious shapes and lines - this was how Aatifi first perceived letters as a child. Since then, the artist has worked closely with Islamic calligraphy, engaging with the form and essence of Arabic characters. Aatifi learned the most important styles of the classical art of calligraphy in the city of his birth, Kandahar, Afghanistan. Even as a student of the art of calligraphy, he began to modify the characters. Over the years, he has refined and reduced elements of Islamic calligraphy, developing a unique visual language that is both independent of text and universally understandable.

With the solo exhibition 'News from Afghanistan', the Pergamonmuseum presented vibrant contemporary art that draws from the rich culture of the Islamic world.

Length: 8:14 minutes
Production: Museum für Islamische Kunst / Filmhaus Bielefeld

Cobalt Blue between Persia and China

White tableware with blue decorations is known all over the world and is closely associated with China. But the beginnings of this success story lie between the Far and Middle East. Goods, but also ideas were exchanged via early trading networks across the Indian Ocean. The color pigment cobalt blue plays a special role in this.

Length: 1:22 Minutes
Produktion: Museum für Islamische Kunst / Stefan Matlik

Lustre-Pottery Technique

Lustre is a metallic gloss on ceramics, which turns goods into luxury products. The secret of its manufacture appeared over centuries in various places in Islamic countries and disappeared again after a certain time. The video traces the history of lustre from its first appearance and explores how the technology has changed.

Length: 2:19 Minutes
Production: Museum für Islamische Kunst / Stefan Matlik

 

Entangled cultures

Olifants - Ivory Horns from the Mediterranean Sea

Olifants are sounding horns made of ivory. They were produced around the Mediterranean sea but the artists and purchasers are unknown. One of the Olifants is housed in the Museum of Islamic Art in the Pergamonmuseum today.

This video emerged form the TAMAM-Project: www.tamam-projekt.de.

Length: 2:40 Minutes
Production: Museum für Islamische Kunst / Stefan Matlik

The spectacular façade of the Mshatta Palace

The Mschatta façade is one of the centerpieces of the museum. It was created in the early days of Islamicate art and combines elements of various predecessor cultures such as the Greco-Roman and old Iranian cultures. It was the showcase façade of a "desert castle" from the first half of the 8th century, the remains of which were restored around 2010 by a team from the Museum and the Technical University of Berlin. 

Length: 3:49 minutes
Production: Museum für Islamische Kunst / Stefan Matlik

Crossroads

In today’s world, it seems that globalization changes our lives more heavily than it did ever before. A joint exhibition between Sharjah’s Museum of Islamic Civilization and Berlin’s Museum of Islamic Art in 2018 put this experience into perspective, as global networks by trade and exchange of ideas exist since millennia. Especially Central Asia, the Middle East and North Africa—the core regions of Islamic culture—have been a crossroads between Africa, Asia, and Europe ever since.

Length: 3:02 Minutes
Produktion: Museum für Islamische Kunst / Clark Imagery

 

Behind the Scenes

Carpet Restauration

Carpets are an important part of the collection of the Museum of Islamic Art ever since it was founded over one hundred years ago. Here you get to know how carpets are restored and preserved. Because the conservators exert themselves to preserve our human cultural heritage.

This video emerged form the TAMAM-Projectwww.tamam-projekt.de.

Length: 3:00 Minutes
Production: Museum für Islamische Kunst / Alexi Papadopoulos

"Where are the Sassanians now?"

During the exhibition "The heritage of the ancient kings. Ktesiphon and the Persian Sources of Islamic Art" (11/15/2016 to 04/23/2017) the Pergamon Museum collected your questions about the exhibition. The director of the Museum of Islamic Art Prof. Dr. Stefan Weber answers them in nine short videos.

Länge: 0:34 Minutes
Produktion: Museum für Islamische Kunst

"Why did you not speak of the Queens?"

During the exhibition "The heritage of the ancient kings. Ktesiphon and the Persian Sources of Islamic Art" (11/15/2016 to 04/23/2017) the Pergamon Museum collected your questions about the exhibition. The director of the Museum of Islamic Art Prof. Dr. Stefan Weber answers them in nine short videos.

Länge: 0:32 Minutes
Produktion: Museum für Islamische Kunst

"How much of the Artefacts exhibited were excavated in-situ (context)?"

During the exhibition "The heritage of the ancient kings. Ktesiphon and the Persian Sources of Islamic Art" (11/15/2016 to 04/23/2017) the Pergamon Museum collected your questions about the exhibition. The director of the Museum of Islamic Art Prof. Dr. Stefan Weber answers them in nine short videos.

Länge: 0:43 Minutes
Produktion: Museum für Islamische Kunst

"Had the german archaeologists the right to remove all these pieces?"

During the exhibition "The heritage of the ancient kings. Ktesiphon and the Persian Sources of Islamic Art" (11/15/2016 to 04/23/2017) the Pergamon Museum collected your questions about the exhibition. The director of the Museum of Islamic Art Prof. Dr. Stefan Weber answers them in nine short videos.

Länge: 2:03 minutes
Produktion: Museum für Islamische Kunst

"How can these Objects be interpreted as Islamic as opposed to Sassanian?"

During the exhibition "The heritage of the ancient kings. Ktesiphon and the Persian Sources of Islamic Art" (11/15/2016 to 04/23/2017) the Pergamon Museum collected your questions about the exhibition. The director of the Museum of Islamic Art Prof. Dr. Stefan Weber answers them in nine short videos.

Länge: 1:23 Minutes
Produktion: Museum für Islamische Kunst

Samarra - Centre of the World 101 Years of Archaeological Research on the Tigris

Marking the 100th anniversary of excavations at the site, the Museum für Islamische Kunst (Museum of Islamic Art) presents an exhibition on the legendary royal city of Samarra, which lay approx. 120 km north of Bagdad on the banks of the Tigris, and which served as the government capital of the powerful Abbasid Caliphate from 836 to 892. Samarra boasted one of most elaborate city plans in the world at the time. With its gigantic palaces, mosques, walled hunting parks, polo fields, and horse racing courses it stretched to an astonishing length of almost 50 km.

Prominent ruins were excavated from 1911 to 1913 by the German archaeologist and Orientalist, Ernst Herzfeld. It was the first scientific excavation expressly dedicated to uncovering a site dating from the Islamic period. The exhibition presented a large selection of the finds that made their way to the Berlin museums under the then prevailing antiquities law, by which the found objects were divided up, with half retained by the local country and half removed by the country responsible for financing and conducting the dig. Among the objects on display are wall paintings, stucco, and wood panelling, which once adorned the walls of palaces. Also on show are lusterware ceramics, Chinese porcelain, and cut glass: testaments of the city's innovative artisanship and far-reaching trade links. The exhibition is enriched by a selection of historical excavation photographs taken by Ernst Herzfeld. They amount to important documents of the ruins, but also depict the landscape and everyday life at the dig.

 

Samarra - Centre of the World 101 Years of Archaeological Research on the Tigris - Interview Amir and Miriam Mahdi

Length: 2:58 minutes
Production: Museum für Islamische Kunst

 

Samarra - Centre of the World 101 Years of Archaeological Research on the Tigris - Interview Karen Bartram

Length: 3:12 minutes
Production: Museum für Islamische Kunst

Samarra - Centre of the World 101 Years of Archaeological Research on the Tigris

Length: 3:46 minutes
Production: Hadi Mahood

 

 

Events

The 6-part concert series "Mschatta Lounge" opens the Museum for Islamic Art as a platform for cross-over productions and musical inspiration from the midst of changing societies. The idea was to combine music with works of art to show both as expressions of global interdependence that would be multi-sensitively perceptible. Six bands were invited to the "Mschatta Lounge" in 2019, each of which interpreted an object from the exhibition in their own musical language. The compositions can be found as "Mschatta Tracks" on the audio guides in the museum and on the Mschatta Lounge website www.mschattalounge.de

 

Karmatürji - "Zevk-ü Sefah", Mschatta Lounge Interview about the Kairener decorative trims

Karmatürji combines traditional Anatolian songs with electronic sounds to create new powerful, yet sensitive, musical worlds.

Length: 4:24 minutes
Production: Retina Fabrik

 

Dima Orsho & Friends - "Aleppo Room", Mschatta Lounge Interview about the Aleppo Room

With Manfred Leuchter on accordion, cellist Basilius Alawad and drummer Bodek Janke, Dima Orsho causes the interplay of different musical traditions to resound.

Length: 3:56 minutes
Production: Retina Fabrik

 

MASAA - "Averroes", Mschatta Lounge Interview about the Alhambra dome

Masaa interweaves deep Arabic verses with jazz to create an unprecedented lyrical liaison.

Length: 4:56 Minuten
Production: Retina Fabrik

 

Bukahara - "Makda", Mshatta Lounge Interview about the astrolabe

Swing, folk, reggae and Arabic-Balkan need not be contradictions, as demonstrated with skill and love by these extraordinary musicians of Bukahara.

Lenght: 4:06 minutes
Production: Retina Fabrik

 

Cyminology - "Echoes Stereo Bounce", Mschatta Lounge Interview about the Mschatta facade

Cyminology combines Persian poetry and contemporary chamber music in a tender synthesis. The subtle, dynamic music emerges from the sound of the Persian language.

Length: 4:37 minutes
Production: Retina Fabrik

Milad Khawam - "Aquamanile", Mschatta Lounge Interview about the Eagle Aquamanile

Milad Khawam’s melodies are inspired by the Levant. Trumpet and the Arabic Qanun are combined in the jazzy style of his songs, accompanied by keyboard, bass and percussion.

Length: 2:55 minutes
Production: Retina Fabrik