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Berlins Gemaldegalerie or Picture Gallery is located within the Kulturforum complex. Opened in 1998, the Gemaldegalerie displays paintings dating from the 13th to the 18th century. The gallery has established itself as one of the most important collections of of European art in the world. To help you find the building, it is located across the road from the Philharmonie Hall which is immediately recognisable by its yellow coloured walls.

The main galleries are assessable from a central hall which contain a collection of sculptures, and is referred to as a meditation area. Paintings are more or less displayed in chronological order, to the left is mainly Italian works, with German and Flemish works on the right.

During and just after World War II, an estimated 400 paintings went missing. In 1948 the remaining paintings were formally divided between the East and the West. The collection was reunited in 1998 when the Gemaldegalerie was created.

The external appearance of the building has attracted many comments, not all of them favorable, but there is no doubt that once inside it is a whole different matter. The central hall with the galleries coming off of it makes it very easy to find your way about. The paintings have been thoughtfully hung, and well lit through the use of skylights. The walls themselves are lined with a material that is described as a light-absorbent velvet. The one minor criticism is that the English language is not really catered for in the signs and the other printed information that is available, but included within the entrance fee is an audio tour that is available in English, is very informative, and well worth considering.

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