Press material: Grunewald Hunting Lodge
Grunewald Hunting Lodge
In 1542, Elector Joachim II Hektor of Brandenburg, an enthusiastic hunter, had the foundation stone for a Renaissance lodge laid here on the shores of the lake. The house was known as “in the green wood”, and that is how the surrounding woodland acquired its name.
Almost all Prussia’s rulers enjoyed hunting in the Grunewald. The lodge underwent frequent conversions and extensions to meet changing needs. In the early 18th century, after crowning himself King of Prussia, Frederick I sought to express his new status by ordering the construction of stately baroque extensions and small buildings for court functions. Frederick the Great had the equipment store built from 1765, so that the diverse paraphernalia of hunting – such as carts, nets, banners and blankets – could be collected here from scattered locations used by the court hunt. The last conversions under the Prussian monarchy were carried out in 1901–1904 for Kaiser William II, who wished to host large companies with all the protocol of court.
From 1927 the lodge was managed by the Prussian Administration of State-Owned Palaces and Gardens. In 1932, when little furniture remained, it was hung with 15th- to 19th-century paintings and run as a public museum. Largely unscathed in the war, in 1949 Grunewald Hunting Lodge became the first museum in Berlin to re-open its doors.
The ground floor provides an interesting history of construction at the lodge. The permanent exhibition in the Store Room not only displays equipment, but also describes various hunting techniques deployed in Grunewald.
In autumn 2011 Grunewald is opening a new exhibition with works by Lucas Cranach senior and his son Cranach junior. Concerts and other events are held regularly in the courtyard and ancillary buildings.