Liberation Hall or Befreiugnshalle

Liberation Hall or Befreiugnshalle
Liberation Hall or Befreiugnshalle

Various places in Germany, from the end of the 18th century and throughout the 19th, were favorable sites for the realization of great architectural projects in the neoclassical style . Especially in cities like Berlin, where we can find exquisite buildings of that style such as the Brandenburg Gate or the Old Museum.


Liberation Hall or Befreiungshalle

However, it should be noted that Germany as such did not exist as a single country until well into the 19th century. These were several independent territories, and one of the most flourishing was Bavaria, a kingdom that shone with special light during the years of rule of Louis I(1786 – 1868) and about which we have already told you on other occasions, for example when we dedicated a post to the portrait of Lola Montez.

Well, this monarch decided to build a great monument that will commemorate the victory that Bavaria had against France during the wars against Napoleon Bonaparte between 1813 and 1815.

This monument is the Befreinungshalle or Liberation Hall, and is located in the city of Kelheim, north ofMunich, the Bavarian capital. The king commissioned this construction in 1842 from the architect Friedrich von Gärtner (1791 – 1847). Although he could not see it finished, since the work waslasted for more than 20 years and was not inaugurated until 1863, and by then it had undergone subtle aesthetic changes due to the intervention of another of the great German architects of the time Leo von Klenze (1784 – 1864).

The truth is that the building is imposing, both for its location at a high point in the landscape and for its classicist architecture and its cylindrical shape.

In it, the 18 columns that run along the entire façade and that serve as the base for various allegorical statues stand out. These columns rhythmically animate the building, but the truth is that the first impression is that of being a very heavy building, almost massive. Although that feeling is diluted inside, where again more columns, allegories, figures and shields stand out. As well as the marble floors or the great dome on a drum that can be seen much better thanks to an elevated gallery that runs through the entire internal space.

A most luxurious environment and also a clear official atmosphere. After all, the place was conceived as a memorial of military victories, and for this reason it has a grandiloquent tone, perhaps excessive, but without a doubt very typical of mid-century neoclassical architecture XIX throughout the European continent, and even in America, where this art was exported for everything that had to do with official, government or commemorative buildings.

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