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Zentralinstitut für Kunstgeschichte. Central Institute for Art History

Exterior View of the Zentralinstitut für Kunstgeschichte

The ZI offers one of the most extensive libraries in the field of art histors worldwide.

The photograph collection can be consulted with free shelf access. (Photo: Christoph Hellhake)

The ZI edits publications on a great variety of art-historical topics every year.


Katharina-von-Bora-Str. 10 (ehem. Meiserstr. 10)
80333 München

089/289 27-556

Gallery Hours

Sonderausstellungen und Bibliothek: Mo.-Fr. 9.00 - 20.00 Photothek: Mo.-Fr. 9.00 - 17.00

The Zentralinstitut für Kunstgeschichte (ZI) is the only independent art historical research institute in Germany. The library holds over 560,000 volumes, and the photography library stores over 900,000 photos. These resources join other media items to offer a unique opportunity for investigations into art history. These varied holdings and services provided by the ZI are available on-site and online which makes it quite important for the international research community. The rich program of lectures and academic conferences on various topics underscore the reputation of the ZI as an internationally-oriented scientific forum.  The location in Munich's Kunstareal with a neighborhood loaded with museums and higher education facilities make the ZI a privileged site for art history research and the promotion of academic sciences. The origin of the Zentralinstitut für Kunstgeschichte lies in the "Central Art Collecting Point" of the American occupying government in 1946.

Zentralinstitut für Kunstgeschichte
World Histories of Architecture. Origins, Narratives and Images 1700-2016
15.12.2016 - 28.02.2017

During the period from 1700 to 2015, from Fischer von Erlach's "Entwurf einer historischen Architektur" of 1721 until the destruction of Palmyra, the city of ruins, by the IS, numerous different forms of writing the history of global architectures have been published. Although global architectural history is currently very popular, a critical survey of these elaborately illustrated world histories – primarily single-volume works – has not yet taken place. Fifteen such world histories were published in the 19th century alone in German, not to mention the works in French and English. Beyond these, the world history of architecture was also represented as a chart or diagram, and even in paintings and watercolors. From the comparative histories of religion and culture of the Enlightenment to the national and imperial narratives of the 19th century, from the racist and völkisch models of interpretation up to decolonization and UNESCO World Cultural Heritage – concepts about architecture, nature, and origins always play a prominent role.

Angebote des Museumspädagogischen Zentrums (MPZ)
Familien- und Ferienaktionen, Geburtstage für Kinder und Jugendliche im Museum, Veröffentlichungen, Programme für Klassen aller Schularten und Jahrgangsstufen und Kindertagesstätten, Fortbildungen

Calendar of events

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