K21 Museum Dusseldorf

K21 Museum Dusseldorf

The K21 art museum in Düsseldorf exists as a counterpart to the K20 as a museum for modern and contemporary art. It is housed in the Ständehaus Düsseldorf, which looks back on a very long history. The Ständehaus on Düsseldorf’s Kaiserteich (built from 1876 to 1880) was the plenum and building of the so-called Provincial Diet of the Prussian Rhineland from 1880 until after 1930. On the occasion of a visit of Emperor Wilhelm I and his wife Empress Augusta in 1884, the Düsseldorf sculptor and since 1885 art academy professor Karl Janssen designed the plaster figure „Father Rhine and his Daughters“ for the interior decoration of the ceremonial act. In 1897, the sculpture, newly created by Janssen from bronze, was placed as a fountain in front of the north portal, where it can still be seen today.

1949 to 1988 seat of the North Rhine-Westphalia state parliament

During bombing raids in 1943, the Ständehaus was burned out except for the outer walls. The state parliament appointed by the British had decided to rebuild this former parliament building of the provincial parliament of the Prussian Rhineland as the seat of the North Rhine-Westphalian state parliament. The Ständehaus was reopened as early as March 15, 1949, and sessions of the state parliament were held here until July 1988.1 During its approximately 40 years of use, a total of 864 plenary sessions were held. It is built in the style of the historic Neo-Renaissance, the architect’s basic design consisting of four wings is reminiscent of the palazzi from the Italian Renaissance period. A newly installed glass dome towers over the building as a roof, which is unparalleled.

The museum houses works of German expressionism, classical modernism and American art after the Second World War. In addition, there are paintings by Picasso, Kandinsky and installations by Joseph Beuys. Towering over the building as a roof is a huge glass dome, under which is one of the most breathtaking exhibition spaces I’ve ever seen. If you think you’re an art buff, you may be proven wrong here. If not, this monument is definitely worth seeing from the inside and outside, especially from an architectural point of view.

K21, Ständehausstr. 1, 40217 Düsseldorf

1 Cf.: NRW State Parliament: Ständehaus