Aby Warburg: Bilderatlas MNEMOSYNE – The Original

Commentary Volume

€ 52.00

Date of publication September 2022

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Aby Warburg: Bilderatlas MNEMOSYNE – The Original
Commentary Volume

Ed. Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin, text(s) by Roberto Ohrt, Axel Heil, graphic design by Axel Heil, Christian Ertel, fluid editions


2022. 600 pp., 200 ills.


17.40 x 24.50 cm

ISBN 978-3-7757-4695-3

Commentary Volume on an Extra-Special Illustrated Volume

From 1925 until his death in 1929 the Hamburg-based art and cultural scholar Aby Warburg worked on his Mnemosyne Atlas, a volume of plates that has, in the meanwhile, taken on mythical status in the study of modern art and visual studies. With this project, Warburg created a visual reference system that was far ahead of its time. In cooperation with the Warburg Institute, Roberto Ohrt and Axel Heil have now undertaken the task of finding all of the individual pictures from the atlas and displaying these reproductions of artworks from the Middle East, European antiquity, and the Renaissance in the same way that Warburg himself showed them, on panels hung with black fabric. This commentary volume and the exhibition in Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin succeed in restoring Warburg’s vanished legacy—something that researchers have long considered impossible. (English edition: ISBN 978-3-7757-4694-6)

​ABY WARBURG (1866–1929), scion of a Hamburg banking family, completed his doctorate in 1892 on the Italian Renaissance painter Sandro Botticelli. As a result, he comprehensively studied the interplay of myths, images and rites from different cultural contexts. This lead him to his main subject matter: the afterlife of antiquity in the Renaissance. With his attempt to break down the rigid boundaries of art history, Warburg is regarded as one of the fathers of modern pictorial science.

The art historian ROBERTO OHRT (*1954) and the artist AXEL HEIL (*1965) have searched through the 400,000 individual pictures in the Photographic Collection at the Warburg Institute in London, looking for the images for the atlas. Their work is a comprehensive tribute to Aby Warburg’s pictorial world.

Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin
April ​2–June 29,2020

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