A large sculpture used as Nazi propaganda in Adolf Hitler’s New Reich Chancellery headquarters has gone on display in Berlin as part of an exhibition examining the city’s history of “toxic” monuments.
The Nazi propaganda piece is part of many similar works in the exhibition “Unveiled. Berlin and its Monuments” which explores how various state powers tried to shape the Berlin cityscape with monuments between 1849 to 1986.
One of three oversized equestrian sculptures to have survived the widespread destruction in Berlin in 1945, it can now be seen in a room behind a glass pane in the Zitadelle museum in northern Berlin’s Spandau district.
As restoration work on it has not been completed, visitors cannot yet – as planned for the future – come close to the horse sculpture.
Later in 2023, upon completion of the restoration work, the museum will fully reopen its room dedicated to Nazi era propaganda art, near monuments erected during other historical periods in Germany, notably the head of a towering Lenin monument from what was East Berlin.
Two “Striding Horses” by sculptor Josef Thorak (1889-1952), a key artist in Nazi propaganda, had been returned to Berlin’s Zitadelle museum after German officials seized them in a raid in 2015, bringing them back into state hands.
A third statue stands on the grounds of a school at Lake Chiemsee in Bavaria, where it has remained since the Thorak family used the work to pay boarding school fees for their son in the 1960s.