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Deutsches Technikmuseum - Max Krajewsky

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Black-and-white photograph: Factory building in AEG’s trademark yellow brick style. The windows are made up of many small panes. In the foreground large drums of cable.

Communication cable factory, AEG Kabelwerke-Oberspree, 1929/30

Black-and-white photograph: View inside the war-ruined church, showing the nave and entrance. It is a building site, the roof is still missing. On the left an aisle with round brick arches and a gallery.

Kapernaum Church, Berlin-Wedding, 22 July 1954

Black-and-white photograph: Side view of the model. In the foreground the tunnel of Berlin’s first underground line. The building with the dome is “Haus Vaterland”, at the time a popular entertainment venue.

Model of Potsdamer Platz Station, 1938

Black-and-white photograph: The lower part of the steel pylon has just been completed, there is still a slim support at the front. The photo seems dark and stormy, possibly due to a poor quality negative

Construction of Tegel Radio Mast, 17 June 1948

Max Krajewsky – Photographic Chronicler of Berlin´s Buildings

Special exhibition in the gallery of our section  "History of Photo Technology"

2 March to 4 July 2010

Black-and-white photograph: Night-time shot of the brightly lit theatre foyer. A large convex window takes up most of the façade. The perspective lends the building a monumental character. The composition is framed by a tree on the right

Schiller Theatre, 1951. Foyer window with anodised aluminium frames

This exhibition presents fragments of the work of the technical photographer Max Krajewsky (1892–1972) in public for the very first time. About ninety prints – originally commissioned by state and municipal authorities and clients in the building trade – document the high standing of this architectural and industrial photographer, whose continuity from before the First World War through to the post-1945 era made him the chronicler of Berlin’s architectural history.

Alongside Arthur Köster and Emil Leitner, Krajewsky was one of the most important architectural photographers of his time in Berlin. He created a huge oeuvre, whose full extent can today only be guessed at because the negatives, plates and photographer’s archive have all been lost.

Black-and-white photograph: The main entrance and west wing walls, which survived the war relatively unscathed, seen from the south-east. Pavillions at the four corners and two at the sides. The roof is gone, in its place an iron lattice frame

Ruins of Lehrter Bahnhof, 24 October 1956

Recording Berlin’s Construction

The exhibition presents for the first time the Berlin building sites that Krajewsky documented between 1930 and 1968. In the 1930s Krajewsky followed the construction work for Berlin’s new underground and overground railways, including the tunnel collapse of 20 August 1935 in which nine workers died.

His photographs of Nazi prestige projects such as the New Reich Chancellery and the SS housing complex Siedlung Zehlendorf and of the model of Hitler’s planned World Capital Germania gained a place in collective visual memory that they retain to this day. Krajewsky photographed the Schiller Theatre construction site in 1950 for the Berlin building firm Steffens & Nölle, and the finished building in 1951.

Panorama of Industrial Culture

Max Krajewsky’s work takes us to many of the important sites of Berlin’s city history – and wider German history too. His pictures reveal the cultural, industrial and technological history of the past century, while the wide range of genres attests to his technical flexibility and skill.

Treasures from the Museum Archives

The exhibition is based largely on material from the company archives of AEG-Telefunken and Steffens & Nölle A.G. and the legacies of Friedrich Kittlaus and Gerhart Goebel, which are looked after by the Historical Archives of the German Museum of Technology.

Copyright: German Museum of Technology Foundation, Berlin; all photographs by Max Krajewsky