The Bode Museum is one of the groups of museums on the Museum Island in Berlin, Germany; it is a historically preserved building. The museum was designed by architect Ernst von Ihne and completed in 1904. Originally called the Kaiser-Friedrich-Museum after Emperor Frederick III, the museum was renamed in honour of its first curator, Wilhelm von Bode, in 1956.
Closed for repairs since 1997, the museum was reopened on October 18, 2006 after a €156 million refurbishment. True to the ethos of its founding director, Wilhelm von Bode, who believed in mixing art collections, it is now the home for a collection of sculptures, Byzantine art, and coins and medals. The presentation of the collections is both geographic and chronological, with the Byzantine and Gothic art of northern and southern Europe displayed separately on the museum’s first floor and a similar regional division of Renaissance and Baroque art on its second floor.
The sculpture collection shows art of the Christian Orient (with an emphasis on Coptic Egypt), sculptures from Byzantium and Ravenna, sculptures of the Middle Ages, the Italian Gothic, and the early Renaissance. Late German Gothic works are also represented by Tilman Riemenschneider, the south German Renaissance, and Prussian baroque art up to the 18th century. In the future selected works of the Gemäldegalerie will be integrated into the sculpture collection. This is reminiscent of William von Bode's concept of "style rooms", in which sculptures, paintings, and crafts are viewed together, as was usual in upper middle-class private collections.
The Münzkabinett ("Coin Cabinet") is one of the world's largest numismatic collections. Its range spans from the beginning of minting in the 7th century BC in Asia Minor up to the present day. With approximately 500,000 items the collection is a unique archive for historical research, while its medal collection makes it an important art exhibition at the same time.