The permanent Silk Road exhibition at the Staatliche Museen's Dahlem site has been almost completely dismantled, in a process that started in mid-April. Only two large built-in murals and the “Höhle der Ringtragenden Tauben" (Cave of the Ring-Bearing Pigeons) remain in the exhibition hall. Beginning 25 May 2016 the paintings will be carefully removed from the wall.
Preparing the collections of the Museum für Asiatische Kunst for transport to the Humboldt Forum requires extensive conservation treatments and logistical measures. The move will take place in multiple stages which must correspond exactly to the ongoing construction at Schlossplatz. All the objects must be removed from their structural location, conserved or restored, and adjusted in the Dahlem laboratories to fit the new exhibition design before they are moved. To this end the special exhibition hall in Dahlem has been converted into a depot and laboratory area. Because of its strategic location this space will also serve as a “switchyard" to the Humboldt Forum in the coming months.
The complicated dismantling of the Buddhist cave sanctuary from the 5th century CE, which weighs several tons, will follow in the next stage, after the murals have been removed.