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Topics in April

Apr 23, 2010

Brightly Lit Nights, Smog, and Lurking Dangers

Many spots in Berlin are bright day and night: Light pollution brings confusion to the biorhythm of humans and animals. Above: Potsdamer Platz, Leipziger St. (r.), Tiergarten park (l.)

Researchers examine climatic and environmental influences on big city residents.

Researchers working within the MILIEU research project at Freie Universität are investigating how climate and environmental factors affect people living in big cities. “MILIEU” is an acronym for the project’s German title, Der Mensch im Ballungsraum unter Klima- und Umwelteinflüssen (Residents of Major Urban Areas under Climatic and Environmental Influences). The research alliance is based on cooperation among various universities in Berlin and Brandenburg. Sixty-seven scholars and scientists from various disciplines, from meteorology to medicine, are studying how change in the climate and environment affects people and animals living in major urban areas.
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Keeping Memory Alive

Depot at Schönhausen Castle  with objects by Wilhelm Lehmbruck and Lovis Corinth, ca. 1938/39, Berlin.

“Degenerate Art” research center at Freie Universität Berlin publishes database on the whereabouts of 21,000 works of art banned under the Nazi regime

In 1937, Adolf Hitler ordered the curators of museums and collections in the German Reich to surrender works of art that the National Socialists had labeled “degenerate.” More than 21,000 objects were seized following the order. Now, researchers at Freie Universität Berlin have reconstructed the fates of these works and published them in a database that is available to the public at no charge.

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Filmmaking and Research in Africa

The visual culture of Africa will be one of the priorities of new course offerings at the Art History Institute.

Tobias Wendl hopes to break new ground in a newly endowed professorship.

Contemporary photography, first-run films, and video installations – those aren’t exactly the artifacts that spring immediately to mind when we think of African art. But to Tobias Wendl, they are just as much a part of the continent’s art history as its widely known masks and sculptures. His areas of focus include not only “old” and contemporary African art, but also visual culture in general. On March 1, 2010, Wendl was named the first holder of the Alfried Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach Endowed Chair for African Art at the Art History Institute.

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