Freiburg: Uniseum reopened – new exhibits offer those interested an insight into the history of the University of Freiburg


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After a break due to the corona pandemic and fire protection work, the Uniseum rooms are open again. Visitors can immerse themselves in the history of the Albert Ludwig University for free on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. Three new exhibition areas provide exciting insights into the university in times of the plague, the anatomical-anthropological collection and the Academic Film Club.

Special exhibition “Plague escape to Villingen”:
Although the pandemic currently triggered by SARS-COV-2 poses challenges for the university, changes in processes caused by epidemics are historically nothing new: Up until the beginning of the 17th century, the University of Freiburg repeatedly fled from plague outbreaks and sought refuge elsewhere, for example in Villingen . The new exhibition unit is dedicated to these escapes from the university to Villingen and how to deal with the plague epidemics.

Exhibition table for the anatomical-anthropological collection:
The unit on Alexander Ecker, an anatomist and anthropologist who worked in Freiburg from 1850, and the anatomical-anthropological skull collection that he founded was redesigned. The collection partly contains human remains, the acquisition of which is ethically and scientifically problematic from today’s perspective. Against this background, students first developed a concept for the redesign of the exhibition wall as part of an interdisciplinary main seminar. Thanks to the financial support of the Förderverein Alumni Freiburg eV, the Burckhardt Foundation from the United Studienstiftung-Verwaltung of the Albert-Ludwigs-Universität and the Dr. Rolf Böhme Foundation of the Sparkasse Freiburg-Nördlicher Breisgau, the exhibition unit has now been supplemented by a hexagonal exhibition table. This illuminates the problem of skull collection from different perspectives and takes on new knowledge.

Exhibition object “Cinema out of a suitcase”:
The “Zeiss Ikon Kinobox” cinema projector from the 1930s is on permanent loan from the Academic Film Club to the Uniseum. Screeners used to travel with her from place to place, turning every room into a cinema. In 1962, the Academic Film Club bought the projector that could be used in the university to show films in standard 35mm cinema format. Although the box was only in use for about three years, it marked the beginning of a new era of student film screenings.

Sandra Haas, curator of the Uniseum, points out that due to current hygiene regulations, guided tours are currently not possible and audio guides cannot be used.

(Press information: Albert Ludwig University of Freiburg, September 16, 2020)

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