Villa Schöningen presents changing exhibitions of contemporary art alongside works by Old Masters, seamlessly blending historical and contemporary artistic narratives. The venue itself, steeped in its own history and architectural landmarks, harmoniously blends art and nature, encouraging dialogue on past and present alike.
Since 2023, our temporary exhibitions have explored themes and questions inspired by works from the Döpfner Collection.
With a focus on the female nude, the collection boasts a diverse range of some 650 works, making it one of the world’s most important collections in this specific genre. The holdings span a range of artistic forms, from sculpture, painting, drawing, photography, video, and performance art; from 8,000-year-old artifacts to contemporary works. Depictions of nudity and sexuality reflect the evolving landscape of moral values, political shifts, definitions of intimacy, privacy, tenderness, and violence, as well as shifting paradigms of gender roles and identity. Representations of and ideas about the female body serve as a barometer of the ever-changing socio-political climate, and as such, serve as an excellent starting point for an exhibition space that aims to shed light on contemporary issues.
Through changing exhibitions, guided tours, readings, concerts, and drawing classes, as well as our ongoing partnerships with other institutions, Villa Schöningen strives to be a vibrant center for art, social dialogue, and freedom-not only in Potsdam, but also nationally and internationally. All programming is conceived and implemented by our director.
Villa Schöningen and its historic park are a protected monument and an integral part of the Prussian Palaces and Gardens, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The maintenance of the premises and the ongoing exhibition program are made possible by the generous private support of Mathias Döpfner.
Pola van den Hövel