City of Science or Centre of Culture?
Darmstadt is both. Like hardly any other city, it unites spirit and research, artistry and innovative strength. Darmstadt still bears the charm of a residential city - and is at the same time a city of modernity and a field of experimentation for culture in the midst of a research landscape.
The awakening began with the construction of the artists' colony on the Mathildenhöhe, whose exhibitions enjoy an international reputation and which link a document of the awakening to modern forms of building and living with the current art scene. Today, Mathildenhöhe Darmstadt is on the UNESCO World Heritage List as an outstanding example of experimental architecture of the early 20th century.
The destroyed city's awakening after the Second World War was also devoted to projects of architecture, art, music, literature and design. Today Darmstadt has a diverse free theatre scene. The world-renowned Jazz Institute and the Akademie für Tonkunst are at home here. The German Academy for Language and Poetry awards the Georg Büchner Prize annually to outstanding literary figures. The city permanently paves the "Darmstadt way" for new and experimental things - not only in all branches of the arts. Also for top-ranking universities and three dozen nationally and internationally renowned research institutions: among them three Fraunhofer Institutes and the Gesellschaft für Schwerionenforschung GSI (Society for Heavy Ion Research), which discovered the chemical element darmstadtium in 1994, eponym of the Science and Congress Centre.
Science and culture are a strong duo in Darmstadt. The Residence Palace offers the Technical University space for research and teaching. Next door, the renovated Landesmuseum displays art from antiquity to the present, scientifically important natural history collections, zoological dioramas from 1906 and geological-palaeontological exhibits.
Before Darmstadt was given the title "City of Science" in 1997, it was considered the "City of the Arts". In fact, cultural institutions and scientific institutions work closely together, out of the realisation that tradition and innovation pave the "Darmstadt way" - for always new things to be discovered in Darmstadt and the world.
Text: Wissenschaftsstadt Darmstadt Marketing GmbH