Wargaming the Seven Years War with 40mm miniatures, done by: Johann-Peter Scheck and Anselm Scheck

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Friederisiko: the big exhibition in Potsdam

Last weekend I went to Berlin to meet my children and to enjoy the city - at this occasion I also took the time to visit Potsdam and Schloss Sanssouci with its all around announced exhibition strangely called "Friederisiko" (a mix of Frederick and risk...).
Firstly, the good parts: It was possible to enter into the entire palace (neues Palais) and to see all the rooms and chambers of der Alte Fritz. The exhibitors placed all private things of Frederick they found; as his books, travel bags, personal dishes and so on.
An overview wasn´t to find; instead of this, there were some departments called "dynasty", "horizons", "world", "risk and fame"; always containing particular aspects more or less linked with Frederick.
It was very difficult to find an causal overview of his life and all the causes and consequences of his doing. If you don´t know very well his biografy, you are lost in an confusion. If you know about him, it´s boring, because the exhibition don´t give any new informations.

why Elisabeth II should be part of this exhibition, I ask. source: www.friederisiko.de

Typical german was, that they avoided to give any informations about Fredericks wars - I found absolutely nothing. The exhibition focussed the psychological aspects of Frederick as human being like a screening of his inner constitution. This seems to be contemporary and is - following our public discussions - absolutely political correct: everthing, really everything what could be used as a comparision "Frederick - Prussia - war - Third Reich" has absolutely to be evited.

Sorry, this is the dissappointing part of the exhibition: it is again not a factual exhibition, but a position - we as germans don´t talk about war; the official position is: Frederick was not a great leader or reformer, just a man with a complicated psyche - end.
I missed e.g. the aspects of Frederick as musician (he had the best teachers in that time: Joachim Quantz and Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach, two of the top musicians in this epoch. Also I missed all his doubts in his life and in his warfares, his excellent mind and strategical talent.

some impressions of the exhibition. source: www.friederisiko.de

Honestly, after Versailles and Peterhof the Prussian palace is modest in its architecture and furniture, the spatial concept just à la mode du 18me siècle. But the original materials, tapestry, furniture and exhibition objects was really exciting to see. You cannot walk on the floor now, because they built a wooden base, large enough for two adults passing - so it was not possible to stand near an interesting object, because you have to keep moving for the people behind you. And the perspiration of all that people walking through the rooms gave an warm, bad odoured climate - so the initial enthusiasm gave way to the stressed and uncomfortable feeling.

After 2 hours of this warm and humid treatment I found the way out and was immediately confronted with the Potsdam reality as a Stasi-City as I know it since 1992: assiduously working east-policemen prowled all the day long around the Neue Palais and presented me a parking ticket for letting my car beside the street under a tree.. Der Osten lebt..

splendid: Fredericks library.  source: www.friederisiko.de

splendid: Fredericks musician chamber. source: www.friederisiko.de

the interior design was not the best I saw.   source: www.friederisiko.de

I recommend: the book with historian´s essays.

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