Cover  ·  Contents

He was the secret lord of the Berlin underworld. From the turn of the century through the early 1930s, Alfred Grenander (1863–1931) provided the emerging metropolis of the Weimar Republic with an extensive net of subway stations. He was an architect, draughtsman, and city planner; he was an interior decorator, furniture designer, and renewer. And he was a Swede.

With this book, an unknown chapter in the architectural history of Berlin is uncovered. Presenting a plethora of unpublished documents in words and images, it comprises opulent material concerning buildings by Grenander in Berlin and its vicinity. It devotes attention to his importance for today’s discussions of urban planning, and it paints a portrait of the German representative at the world’s fair in St. Louis in 1904, where he was being celebrated as “the renewer of German art.” In addition, the book treats the cultural and technological history of the subway, which as almost no other means of transportation influenced the perceptual habits of people during the first decades of the twentieth century, providing life with its new, metropolitan rhythm.

Contributions by Christoph Brachmann, Alfred Gottwaldt, Durs Grünbein, Falk Jaeger, Sven-Åke Johansson, Jörg Kuhn, Steffie Kuthe, Thomas Macho, Dorrit Müller, Martin Petsch, Ann Katrin Pihl Atmer, Thomas Steigenberger, Anja Steinhorst, Hanns Zischler, and Aris Fioretos.


Berlin zwischen damals und heute

Dirk Böndel   7


Ein unbekanntes Kapitel Baugeschichte

Bitte Nygren   8


Ein Paar Hände. Vorwort

Aris Fioretos   10



Durs Grünbein   25


Ein Schwede baut Berlin

Christoph Brachmann, Steffi Kuthe, Martin Petsch, Thomas Steigenberger   26


Building the Tube

Ulrike Weber   88


Alfred Grenanders Tagebuch und seine schwedischen Wurzeln

Ann Katrin Pihl Atmer   96


Grenanders Berliner Adressen

Alfred Gottwaldt   112


Ansichtskarten von Untergrundbahnhöfen

Anja Steinhorst   128



Durs Grünbein   138



Hanns Zischler   140


Faszination des Untergrunds

Dorit Müller   146


Die Gedenktafel im U-Bahnhof Klosterstrasse

Jörg Kuhn   170


Bayerischer Platz

Durs Grünbein   178


Der Stil des Stahls und der Stil des Steins

Falk Jaeger   180


Farbe im Raum – Farbe im Stadtraum

Christoph Brachmann   190


Der Grenaphon

Sven-Åke Johansson   214


Christoph Brachmann et alii

Katalog zu den Werken von Alfred Grenander   216


Verzeichnis der Bauten Alfred Grenanders

Thomas Steigenberger   332


Literaturverzeichnis   346


Autorinnen und Autoren   356


Bildverzeichnis   358

Berlin über und unter der Erde.
Alfred Grenander, die U-Bahn und die Kultur der Metropole (Berlin above and below Ground)

Essays · Editor · In German · Berlin: Nicolai, 2006 · 360 pages · Cover and design: gewerk, Berlin · English language rights available

ISBN: 978-91-7331-031-4