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Christmas Time at the MEK

Museum Europäischer Kulturen

Beginning on Saturday 1 and Sunday 2 December, the first weekend of Advent, the Museum Europäischer Kulturen (MEK) in Berlin-Dahlem is ringing in this year’s festive season with a varied programme of exhibitions and events for young and old. The MEK collection includes numerous outstanding objects related to Christmas festivities. In addition to the mechanical Weihnachtsberg from the Ore Mountains, which delights audiences all year round in the permanent collection display, in the current special exhibition, the MEK is looking to the stars. The exhibition Stars – not only at Christmas Time focuses on the star as heavenly body, as mathematical figure, as religious symbol and as ornament. The exhibition shines a light on well-known Christmas stars like the ‘Hernnhuter’ or the ‘Sebnitzer’ stars, explaining their production methods and delving into their origins. A ‘starry path’ leads visitors to related objects in the collection display.

The coming weeks will also see a varied events programme at the MEK: beginning on 1 December 2018 there will be workshops where you can learn a range of techniques for making your own star. On 2 December 2018 there will be a Neapolitan Christmas concert for the whole family. Young and old alike are also invited to the Sing-Along on 6 December 2018, before the Lighting of the big Christmas tree in the foyer takes place on 15 December 2018. The Christmas festivities in the MEK draw to a close on 6 January 2019 with the traditional German gift-swap, for everyone who didn’t find the right gift under the Christmas tree.

The Showcase of Contemporary Issues will also be taking on a festive theme, looking into a controversy that unravelled in Sweden around Saint Lucy’s Day on 13 December. Framed by the question of who’s allowed to be Lucy (and who’s not), the showcase demonstrates that festive rituals are in a continual state of flux and reflect contemporary social issues.