Himmelssaal, Haus Atlantis, Bremen, Germany
Photo by Wendy Darling

Vertical panorama of the “Sky Room.”

Some background on the “Atlantis” theme of the building:

The building was the second designed by Bernhardt Hoetger (1929–31) for Böttcherstrasse on the basis of ideas from Ludwig Roselius, the prosperous coffee entrepreneur, and Herman Wirth, an ethnographer specializing in German ancestral heritage. Roselius was impressed by Wirth’s belief that Atlantis, now sunk in the North Sea, was originally inhabited by Germanics who took their culture and civilization to Egypt and Mesopotamia, making the Germans the oldest race on earth. Constructed as a demonstratively modern Art Deco building of glass, wood and ferro-concrete, it was therefore structured specifically to house an institute for the study of Atlantis with a lecture theatre, reading room, club rooms (for members of Roselius’ Club zu Bremen) and exhibition space. The Atlantis building has been described as the “bizarre centre” of Roselius’s architectural investment in Böttcherstraße.


Sculptures, Böttcherstraße Bremen, Germany
Photos by Wendy Darling

Three more sculptures founds in the project. A few must be by Bernhard Hoetger. Particularly with the stone piece, you can see why the project and its art was eventually labeled by the Nazis as “degenerate art.” It’s not “beautiful” and presents distortion instead of presenting ideals.