Berliner Modernism

Characterised by extraordinary designs, Berlin modernism stands for architectural diversity. It was almost always influenced by the idea of cooperative housing construction and the social democratic idea. The goal was to create a happy home using green urban space and an interplay of light, air and colour, and this led to an innovation. The impact on the development of social housing can still be seen today.

All avant-garde currents of anti-historicism in architecture after 1919 describe the concept of modernism. The Bauhaus is a current of that. New and industrially manufactured building materials such as concrete, steel and glass were employed, moving away from the purely decorative to the experimental use of materials, shapes and colours, with a clear focus on functionality. In addition to the more clearly structured forms, curved or even expressive forms also made an appearance.

Particularly prominent are the six large Berlin Modernism housing estates dating from the 1920s, which were added to the UNESCO World Heritage List in 2008. But buildings that sprung up much later, such as the Jewish Museum, constitute modern architecture too.

Grand Tour of Modernism

Grand Tour der Moderne

To celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Bauhaus this year, the Bauhaus Association developed the Grand Tour of Modernism. Architecture and design fans get the chance to discover very special places throughout Germany. 40 buildings of the tour can be found in Berlin alone!

As one of the three Bauhaus cities, Berlin is a special host for numerous events celebrating the 100th anniversary of the Bauhaus: exciting exhibitions, interesting readings and discussions, workshops, and even the one-week Bauhaus Festival from 31 August to 8 September 2019, will take place in the capital city.

You will find our Bauhaus event tips and general information here.


Berliner Moderne ©  Foto: Steve Simon

With the Going Local Berlin app, Berlin can be explored in the footsteps of modern architecture off the beaten track. New tours make it easy to discover and individually plan exciting places which once again highlight Berlin's diverse architectural landscape.

You can find out more about the tours on Berlin Modernism here.

Bruno Taut Siedlung Weißensee ©  visitBerlin, Foto: Angela Kröll

Extensive information on Berlin Modernism is available here.