Art in the Embassy

Working among Rauschenberg and Warhol

 

We think the Chancery itself is a work of art: its architecture respectfully blends in with its Pariser Platz surroundings while at the same time it is a fine example of contemporary architecture.

But our love for the arts does not stop at the façade.

In fact, there is a long tradition for the U.S. State Department not only to employ world-famous architects but also to furnish our embassies with select works by American artists.

We are lucky to have an organization dedicated to soliciting and selecting pieces for specific sites: the Foundation for Art and Preservation in Embassies (FAPE).

Wall Drawing #1256: Five Pointed Stars
Wall Drawing #1256: Five Pointed Stars

For our staff at Pariser Platz, coming to work is almost like entering a gallery or museum: in the courtyard, Ellsworth Kelly’s Berlin Totem is the focus of attention; the Behrenstraße entrance welcomes visitors with the splendid Sol LeWitt, and on the way to our offices we pass a few dozen paintings, drawings, and photographs.

As Riva Castleman, Chairman of FAPE Fine Arts Advisors, has written, Most central to the projects sponsored by FAPE are the contributions of America’s artists. Above and beyond their generosity, they form a group of vibrant diversity – natives, descendents of pioneers and slaves, foreign born – which has been the heartbeat of American creativity from its beginning to now.

Read more about the history of the U.S. Chancery in Berlin.