Dokumentationsort Hotel Silber

Stuttgart/2015

The Hotel Silber is a place of smooth transitions. The change of institutions and organisations that have been domiciled on the premises of the Hotel Silber, usually executed in a pragmatic way, shows the stability of an almost 100-year-long history of administration reaching from the Reichspost to the Ministry of Integration. Even the biggest disruption of 20th century history has taken place almost seamlessly, when the headquarters of the Secret State Police (Gestapo) were installed in the Hotel Silber during the Third Reich. The concept of the permanent exhibition takes the site of the Hotel Silber as an occasion to tell the story of the Gestapo in Stuttgart – not as a “special case” of story, but with all its historical trends, complexities and consequences. This however can only be done by keeping a critical distance. This distance is embodied by a translucent white gaze that encloses walls and ceilings. The permanent exhibition on the first floor of the Hotel Silber is mainly structured by the division of exhibit layer and annotation layer. Much like the original place that is at the same time separated and connected to the exhibition, the exhibits should as far as possible speak for themselves, the annotation layer with graphics and media playing only a secondary role for the comprehension of the visitor. A direct engagement with the exhibits and the development of independent thoughts is just as possible as a profound interaction with the individual topics.