Prussian Akademie der Künste

The Akademie der Künste’s database of members is open to the public for research. Here, you can not only find all present members and honorary members, but using the Advanced Search function (Erweiterten Suche), you can also find past members as well. This allows you, for example, to search just for members of the Music Section from 1933–1945.

A list of the women members of the Prussian Akademie der Künste is available here.

A list of the Directors and Presidents of the Prussian Akademie der Künste is available here.

Please note that search and display options of members are in German only.

The Archives of the Prussian Akademie der Künste have been fully digitised. These documents are available as PDF files attached to the individual catalogue data records and can be read online without prior registration. Under the data privacy provisions, certain archival materials can only be viewed online in the reading room. Please note: The sheet numbers in the “includes” component of the file title always refer to the numbering in the document and not to the page numbering in the PDF files.

You can find a list of the teachers at the Akademie der Künste from 1750–1875 here.

The Prussian Akademie der Künste did not keep matriculation registers for its students. Nonetheless, information about its students can be found in various documents. First and foremost, the case files contain details on young actors and students receiving a prize or award. There are, in addition, around 30 files with many lists of students from 1751 – 1875. An ongoing indexing project currently recording the names of students in a database already comprises over 10,000 names. This database is scheduled to be available in 2018.

In 1875, the Prussian Akademie der Künste was granted a new provisional charter. The statutes, ratified and passed into law in 1882, aimed at modernising the training of artists to meet professional standards. The existing School for the Fine Arts and the School for Music became independent institutions within the newly founded Royal Academy. In addition, the studios for master classes were reorganised. In 1930, the Schools of Fine Art and of Music were hived off from the Akademie to create two separate teaching institutions. In 1975, they then merged to create the new university of the Hochschule der Künste, the present-day University of the Arts Berlin (UdK). As a result, the records on the students and teachers from 1875 are kept in the UdK Archives. For enquiries, contact archiv@udk-berlin.de

The following matriculation registers have survived for master classes in art and music for the years 1875–1945:
PrAdK 1402
PrAdK 1403
PrAdK 1404
PrAdK 1405
PrAdK 1406

The catalogue with an index of artists covering 1786 – 1850 is available in a printed form (Helmut Börsch-Supan: Die Kataloge der Berliner akademischen Ausstellungen 1786 bis 1850, Berlin 1971). An index of the names of exhibiting artists from 1828 – 1894 can be found in PrAdK 1442. Other catalogues can be researched through the library’s online public access catalogue (OPAC). Copies are available in the reference books in the Archives Reading Room at the Robert-Koch-Platz location.

The oldest minutes of the meetings dates from 1787, and there is a continuous record of the proceedings from 1803. These provide an insight into the discussions and decisions in the Senate on all aspects of the Akademie’s affairs from the appointment of new members, teachers and young actors, awards for students, expert reports and awarding the title of ‘Akademischer Künstler’, as well as acquisitions and donations to the art collection and library. The complete series of the proceedings from 1786 can be found in the Secret State Archives Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation (Geheimes Staatsarchiv Preußischer Kulturbesitz zu Berlin). As part of the Akademie der Künste’s ‘Berliner Klassik’ project at the Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences and Humanities, Reimar Lacher has compiled Regesta (registry volumes) for the proceedings from 1786–1815.

As the result of a fire in 1743, the holdings in today’s Archives have very few eighteenth-century documents. The Archives also suffered major losses during the Second World War. A reconstruction using the records schedule showed 671 files as missing. The missing files are primarily from the period 1880–1945 (see: Kriegsverluste der Preußischen Akademie der Künste, compiled by Ingrid Häberle, Gudrun Schmidt and Gudrun Schneider, Archiv-Blätter 12, Akademie der Künste 2005).