Denkmalpreis für „Führererlass“-Bildarchiv

Heute wurden die von Europanostra vergebenen europäischen Preise für Denkmalpflege und Kulturerbe bekannt. Prämiert wird im diesem Jahr das zwischen 1943 und 1945 auf Befehl Hitlers angelegte Bildarchiv zur Dokumentation gefährdeter immobiler Kunstwerke (sog. „Führererlass“) in der Kategorie 1c: Collections of Works of Art.

Das Farbdiaarchiv zur Wand und Deckenmalerei ist ein Projekt des Zentralinstituts für Kunstgeschichte in München und des Bildarchivs Foto Marburg .

Towards the end of the Second World War an important campaign to record the wall- and ceiling-paintings in buildings endangered by Allied air-raids was initiated by the Reich’s Ministry of Public Information and Propaganda. From 1943-45, using the innovative technology developed by Agfa, top photographers produced around 40.000 colour glass slides of some 480 buildings in Austria, Bohemia, Germany, Italy, Poland and Russia, many of which were damaged or even destroyed shortly afterwards.

The slides survived the war but were subsequently dispersed in various locations and remained generally unknown.

By the end of the 1990s the slides were severely threatened by the chemical-physical aging process and could no longer be left untreated. A cooperation project between the Bildarchiv Foto Marburg and the Zentralinstitut für Kunstgeschichte in Munich was launched to establish one uniform digital set of images and preserve the original slides, process the images in a database geared to the requirements of scientific research , render all image data and meta data accessible over the Internet, and integrate this data into existing databases. The database is now available for consultation free of charge on websites accessible to scholars and the general public alike. A special “digilib”-server was developed to enlarge the smallest details without diminishing the sharpness of the image, as well as to reference images or parts of them. The high resolution images therefore serve not only as an effective research tool, but have also laid a sound foundation for the restoration of the original interiors themselves.