the project

The project incorporates audio-visual reflections on remembering conflicts, civil unrest, war, atrocities, destruction and death with the use of black and white photography, graphics, film, literature, music and sound in digital collages and montages.

The project is led by Professor Dr. Susanne Junker of Beuth University for Applied Sciences and film director Tim van Beveren from Berlin.

Participating partners are:

master students and alumi of architecture from Berlin , Germany and 18 other nations

master students of the Academy of Fine Arts at the University of Zagreb, Croatia

students of Dom Kultury Srodmiescie at Warsaw, Poland


Zoyda Art Production / Documentarium Team, Malgorzata Walczak and Marek Tomasz Pawlowski, Warsaw

Ivan Salaj (film director), Zagreb

iDemo Institute for Democracy, Zagreb

tvbmedia productions, Berlin


as well as:

numerous volunteers from all over Europe and abroad

about the project

Due to the results and feedback from the first project (»Nekropole Berlin-Neukölln  1945«), a new international multimedia research cooperative project has appeared. It shall combine three major subjects in artistic/architectural/graphical/filmic/literary collages by audio-visual media, covering:

war death and destruction in Berlin since the Thirty Years’ War

the Warsaw Ghetto (October 1940 – May 1943) and Auschwitz

the Croatian city of Vukovar during the Homeland War of 1991

In order to achieve the planned goals and impact, this project became an international collaboration initiative in which several partners and experts are included.



We are pleased and honoured that professor Dr Susanne Junker as the head of the necropolis research project was invited by the Federal Foreign Office and the Körber Foundation to the Berlin Foreign Policy Forum 2020 conference. As already discussed with the dean of FB IV, we will report accordingly.



We learned that our research-member and international coordinator of the civil society initiative, Mr. Tim van Beveren receives the OPUS-KLASSIK 2020 AWARD for his audiovisual production, the documentary film “Women Composers” (original title: “Komponistinnen”) together with the pianist Kyra Steckeweh. Congratulations!


11. September 2020: PX 3 – PRIX DE LA PHOTOGRAPHIE PARIS 2020

We are pleased and honoured to announce that the necropolis-project received a further honorable mention at the int’l Prix de la Photographie  Paris for our second scientific report:
We would like to express our gratitude to the jury and to all our great and fantastic supporters and participants.

03. June 2020: MOSCOW INT’L FOTO AWARDS 2020

The Necropolis Project Vol. II book was awarded with an honorable mention at the  Moscow International Foto Awards 2020.


12. May 2020: Colloquium Necropolis Project at the Aleksander Brückner Center, Martin-Luther-University Halle  

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, an interdisciplinary colloquium was held in an online video conference on the 12th of May 2020.

It was initiated by the Aleksander Brückner Center for Polish Studies, founded in 2012 and is dedicated to the interdisciplinary research of historical and present-day developments in Polish politics, society, language, and culture. It is a cooperative project of Martin Luther University, Halle-Wittenberg, and Friedrich Schiller University, Jena, with the support of the Foundation for German-Polish Cooperation, the German-Polish Research Foundation, and the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD).

The necropolis-projects’ director of research, Professor Dr. Susanne Junker and the projects’ international coordinator Tim van Beveren gave a 40-minute introduction into the projects’ past and its current developments and outlooks. A Q+A followed the presentation with the international participants.



20. December 2019: Necropolis Project at Sebald Conference – Amsterdam

Necropolis Project at the University of Amsterdam’s conference “Memory, Word and Image: W.G. Sebald’s Artistic Legacies“ 12 – 14 December 2019

We are very honored that the University of Amsterdam invited the Necropolis Project to this conference. It was organized by the Amsterdam School for Heritage, Memory and Material Culture, Sandberg Instituut, Goethe Institute, Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, and University of Zagreb/Academy of Fine Arts.

Taking the case of a fascinating author, W. G. Sebald’s interdisciplinary word and image practice on memory and presences of migratory lives was the touchstone for vivid discussions and inspiring contributions. The conference concentrated on academic, professional, artistic, and public scholarship by exploring cutting-edge interdisciplinary research, findings, techniques, practices, and theoretical advances in the areas of memory, word, and image. The impressing keynotes were held by Prof. Dr. Hilde van Gelder, Lieven Gevaert Research Centre for Photography, Art and Visual Culture, and Prof. Dr. James Elkins, School of the Art Institute of Chicago. 

We have received so many suggestions and feedback from our fellow delegates that we are now working on Necropolis Project Volume III with new ideas and perspectives.

However, the conference was overcast by the unexpected decease of Prof. Dr. Thomas Elsaesser, a world-renown expert for film theory. Also, the project’s international coordinator and visiting scientist Tim van Beveren was unable to attend due to interference by the former president of Beuth University, Berlin. Nevertheless, we will continue this mutual exchange with our fellow delegates, be it in London, Melbourne, Zagreb, Belgrade, Paris, or Berlin. 

We are very thankful to the hosts Prof. Dr. Christa-Maria Lerm Hayes, Prof. Dr. Leonida Kovac, Prof. Dr. Ihab Saloul, and Dr. Ilse van Rijn and their assistants.

In addition to the conference, we had intensive visits and research in the Rijksmuseum Amsterdam, the Dutch photography museum Huis Marseille housed in two monumental 17th century canal houses at Keizersgracht, and the Frans Hals Museum in beautiful Haarlem. The architecture of the Portuguese synagogue from the Dutch Golden Age was also awe-inspiring, as was the synagogue in today’s Joods Historisch Museum.



11. October 2019: Necropolis Project Vol. II is released

Volume II of the research on the visual culture of remembrance has been just released. The book, containing 230 pages with 467 photographs and graphics is available as print on demand at Blurb publishing, San Fransisco, USA.

You can see reading samples and order here:

The study of death, time and transitoriness is one of the oldest and most essential themes in philosophy, religion and art. The »Necropolis Project« as research project focuses on visual forms of memory of war, death, destruction, loss, time and decay. Symbols, ciphers, allegories, and the human face are examined in terms of architectural history, cultural science and art theory with photographs and visual-media experiments – as a phenomenological invitation to look, to read and understand pictures and to reflect and to contemplate.

The »pictures« are on the streets and squares of Berlin, on bridges, in front gardens, on facades, at memorial sites, in cemeteries, and in parks. They are part of our everyday lives, yet they have to be discovered and translated as cultural-historical narratives. Symbols and allegories, however, do not necessarily depict reality but also representations from a spatiotemporal world of ideas.


We are pleased and honored to announce that the editorial team of our first book publication of »the necropolis project«, led by Professor Dr. Susanne Junker,  received an Honorable Mention in the 2019 competition in the category »documentary book« by the Jury of the  PRIX DE LA PHOTOGRAPHIE PARIS

With this award, also the entire team of the necropolis project received further international recognition of its ongoing activities as joint cooperation and research project and non-profit civil society initiative, involving 150 participants from more than 20 different nations as of today.

PRIX DE LA PHOTOGRAPHIE PARIS is considered one of Europe’s most prestigious photography competitions since 2007. The competition aims to promote the appreciation of photography, to discover emerging talent, and introduce photographers from around the world to the artistic community of Paris. Winning photographs from this competition are exhibited in a high-profile gallery in Paris and published in the high-quality, full-color Px3 Annual Book.

Winners are selected by an esteemed jury of photographers, gallerists and other distinctive leaders from the photography world. This years jury was chaired by Steve McCurry.

30. May 2019:   MOSCOW INT’L FOTO AWARDS 2019

We are pleased and honored to announce that the editorial team of our first book publication of »the necropolis project«, led by Professor Dr. Susanne Junker,  received a Silver Medal in the Documentary Category by the Jury of the 2019 MOSCOW INTERNATIONAL FOTO AWARDS. It was also named  one of »the best submissions from Germany«.

With this award, also the entire team of the necropolis project received further international recognition of its ongoing activities as joint cooperation and research project and non-profit civil society initiative, involving 150 participants from more than 20 different nations as of today.

MOSCOW INTERNATIONAL FOTO AWARDS’ mission is to recognize, reward and expose talented photographers from around the world and introduce them to the creative community in Russia. Photographers from all corners of the world are encouraged to submit their work.

Winners are selected by an esteemed jury of photographers and leaders in the photography world.

27. May 2019:   MOSCOW INT’L FOTO AWARDS 2019

»Peace of Nature« by Görkem Yildiran

We are honored and pleased to announce that necropolis-project participant Görkem Yildiran has been awarded by the jury of the MOSCOW INTERNATIONAL FOTO AWARDS 2019 with a bronze medal for his picture »Peace of Nature«. The photo has also been selected as one of the best entries from Germany, the so-called jury’s »country pick«.

The picture was taken during the 2018 field trip to discover traces of the Yugoslav Homeland War as of 1991 – 2001.

6. May 2019:  Fine Art Print »SHADES OF GREY« by necropolis-project photographer Tim van Beveren published

As of today the 150 pages fine art print photo edition book »GRAUTÖNE« (Engl. title: »SHADES OF GREY«) by the necropolis-project director of photography Tim van Beveren is published and available via blurb Inc. San Francisco, USA as »print on demand« edition by tvbmedia productions.

Direct orders can be placed via this link:

4 May 2019:  necropolis-project book vol. 2 to be published

We are pleased to announce the upcoming publication of the second volume of the necropolis-project book. Only six months after the first volume was published the second volume will go to print soon and become available by June 2019. It contains 230 pages with essays written by former Federal German Foreign Minister Markus Meckel, Zvi Hecker, Professor Dr. Mara Pinardi, Hala Hamed Alawi, Tim van Beveren, Merle Lampe, Nicolas Böntgen, Carola Veit and others.

29 October 2018:  History Festival War or Peace

“WAR or PEACE” was organized by the Federal Agency for Civic Education (bpb) and the Maxim Gorki Theatre Berlin in cooperation with the German Federal Cultural Foundation, supported by the Federal Foreign Office.

Thomas Krüger, President of BPB Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung/Federal Agency for Civic Education, Bonn stated: “1918 not only marks a significant crossroads of global history. It can also teach us much about the – sometimes diverging – notions of peace and democracy today. Learning about history might not give us answers to all of today’s challenges. But engaging with it can help us to understand each other’s narratives, fears, and hopes in order to find common solutions. The Federal Agency for Civic Education (bpb) and the Maxim Gorki Theatre Berlin created the History Festival WAR OR PEACE to provide input and new perspectives to those who are interested in history, its reception and education.”


Thuhafeni – © 2018 Tim van Beveren – Berlin

We are very pleased to be invited and to get the opportunity to
contribute to this festival with a photography workshop, named
“Angels and Soldiers”. This Necropolis Project workshop took place with more than 20 great participants originating from Namibia, Jordan, Croatia, Poland, USA, UK, Germany, India, and Indonesia.

As Nina Schillings, part of the festivals’ editorial team, with great spirit acknowledged: “These are tremendously good photographs. This is very impressive.”

As BPB on behalf of the Federal Foreign Office said: “We have high hopes that its spirit will live on: We encourage you to spread the word in your home countries (or villages, as we learned during the closing ceremony). We would love to see you keep trying to get to know new perspectives, challenge common narratives and make your contribution to a peaceful future. And maybe – we will meet again at the next event by the Federal Agency for Civic Education.”

26 October 2018: The necropolis project book is published 

Since today the book “the necropolis project” is published and available for order direct from BLURB Inc. or via AMAZON.COM. It contains more than 400 pictures and text on 288 pages.

14 July 2018: A night at the museum

Yesterday night we photographed and filmed for the new exhibition-installation “Shadows”, scheduled for October 2018 at the Deutsch-Russisches Museum-Karlshorst. The current masterclass M10a expresses its gratitude to the director, Dr. Jörg Morré and to his deputy Margot Blank of the museum for their kind support and cooperation. Also a great thanks to museum technical assistant Matthias Biering and the helpful guard Mr. Gerlach.

Special thanks also to Christofer, our drone pilot, and Adam, the fog-generator,  Robert the “grip-rat” 😉 , Carl for safety,  Brian the transport captain and Tim, our DoP.

6 July 2018

Susanne Junker, Tim van Beveren, Wim Wenders                                                           © Wim Wenders

Necropolis project meets Wim Wenders

– To be continued…

22 June 2018:

»The 2018 European Year of Cultural heritage marks a turning point for Europe’s ever-growing movement for cultural heritage. We must build on this momentum to recognize and unfold the positive and cohesive power of our shared cultural heritage and values to connect Europe’s citizens and communities and to give a deeper meaning to the entire European project. The time for action is now.«

(Quote: The Berlin Call To Action –  Berlin, 22 June 2018)

We are very pleased and honored about the participation in the »European Cultural Heritage Summit SHARING HERITAGE SHARING VALUES« from 18 to 24 June 2018.

The moving speeches of the patron of the EYCH2018, Federal President Dr. Frank-Walter Steinmeier, the new Europa Nostra President Prof. Dr. Hermann Parzinger and the maestro Placido Domingo still emphasize how important is to deal with our history and European heritage. The French President Emmanuel Macron added to the role of Europe in a video message.

Especially the interaction of small and regional initiatives with the UNESCO World Heritage “Lighthouses” is featured by the EYCH2018:

»The European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018 emphasizes the cultural diversity of our present and our past in order to strengthen the importance and the values of a united and peaceful Europe. It highlights our cultural heritage as a resource for today’s creativity and as a basis for common future in an ever more intertwined  yet also increasingly fragmented world.«

(Quote: German Commission for UNESCO)

The French president Emmanuel Macron about European history and culture

28 and 29 May 2018

Prof. Dr. Susanne Junker was invited to this years Körber History Forum in Berlin, representing the necropolis project.

»The Körber History Forum 2018 took place in Berlin on 28 and 29 May. It brought together 200 leading actors from politics, science and public life, intellectuals and opinion leaders from Germany, Europe, and the Middle East. This year’s interdisciplinary and international debates about the political dimension of history focused on the imminent threat and the historical roots of Europe’s division, flight and integration as a challenge for Europe, Russia and the West in the era of a “new Cold War”, Turkish Neo-Ottomanism, the legacy of the First World War and the connection between democracy and the promise of prosperity.

The list of speakers included Erkki Tuomioja, former Finnish Foreign Minister and Chairman of “Historians Without Borders”, sociologist Eva Kovács from the Hungarian Academy of Sciences, political anthropologist Esra Özyürek from the London School of Economics, historian Philipp There from the University of Vienna as well as Turkish historian Ilber Ortayli.«

Prof. Dr. Junker also attended the Antisemitism-Session:

“Is anti-Semitism becoming socially acceptable again in Europe?
On the return of old enemy stereotypes”

»Various studies show that more than 70 years after the end of the Second World War, classic anti- Semitism still exists in Germany and other European countries. In recent years, however, public attention has focussed more on Muslim anti-Semitism and its alleged prevalence in European immigrant societies. This has obscured an open debate on the renaissance of hostility towards Jews as a social phenomenon that cannot be clearly attributed to individual groups. How and where does anti-Semitism manifest itself in Germany and Europe today? Where are its historical roots? And how can anti-Semitism be prevented from once again becoming socially acceptable?«

This discussion was led by Stefanie Schüler-Springorum, Technische Universität, Berlin and Miriam Rürup, Institute for the History of the German Jews, Hamburg.

Quote: Körber Stiftung

20 May 2018

The scientific head of the necropolis project, Prof. Dr. Susanne Junker, today was awarded an »Honorable Mention« for her photo series »Oblivion/archangels« by the Moscow International Foto Awards (mifa). – Congratulations.

17 May 2018

Today the multi-media installation »the triptych – layer by layer« was publicly presented in the famous Schinkel-Church at Seelow. The priest Josefine Soltau in her speech emphasized on the importance of remembrance and critical reflection on the past and present. The presentation ended with a prayer for peace by all participants.

Märkische Oder Zeitung: »Multimedial wider das Vergessen« 

4 May – 12 May 2018

From 4 May until 12 May 2018 students from Berlin involved in the necropolis project went to Croatia and were joint by students of the Academy of Fine Arts at Zagreb.

Together they went via the former concentration camp site Jasenovac to the city of Vukovar in East-Slavonia, which was the scene of heavy fightings and atrocities committed during the »homeland-war« of 1991. An international workshop was held during this week where the German students presented parts of their »black box projects«.

At Vukovar, the students visited important places within and outside the city, such as the Castle Eltz, the Vukovar hospital, the Monastery and Ovčara where one of the cruelest mass killings and war crimes of the recent European history took place.

The floor at Ovčara Memorial © 2018 Tim van Beveren

It is also known as the »Vukovar massacre« and took place on 20 November 1991 when Croatian prisoners of war and civilians had been turned over by the Yugoslav People’s Army (JNA) to Serb paramilitary forces.

Since 1992 a total as of 261 human remains were exhumed from the area. In 2006 the storage building used at the Ovčara farm to hold the prisoners in captivity before their execution has become a memorial center.

As an excursion into European-Ottoman history, the students also visited the Castle of Ilok, close to the Serbian border, dating back to the 12th century.

26 April 2018:

In April and May, the necropolis project was invited by the Gedenkstätte und Museum Seelower Höhen (memorial and museum at Seelow Heights) to present the new multi-media installation as well as numerous collages and photographs. The Federal Minister for Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth, Dr. Franziska Giffey (SPD) did send a personal greeting message to recognize the project and its efforts.

Grusswort Bundesministerin Dr. Franziska Giffey  – (in German language)

The necropolis project and the Museum Seelower Höhen are honored and grateful to have received supportive funding for the exhibition by the Minister’s campaign “Demokratie leben!”

14 April 2018

Today the open-air exhibition and the multi-media installation »the triptych – layer by layer« was opened after the ceremony to honor the victims of the battle at the »Seelow-Heigths«. This battle which started the night of 15 April 1945 initiated the Red Army’s conquering of the former Nazi-Germanys capital Berlin. The military operations ended with the unconditional surrender of the city on 2 May 1945.

The opening was attended by numerous high ranking officials, among them the Ambassador of Belarus,  Mr. Denis Sidorenko.

There was an emotional scene when a German surviving veteran (age 93) kissed a Russian soldier after the memorial service.

Märkische Oder Zeitung: Opfer erhalten ein Gesicht

6 April 2018

Today students and her Professor, Dr. Susanne Junker, set up the open-air exhibition at the Museum und Gedenksstätte Seelower Höhen, at Seelow, about 80 km East of Berlin. The location marks the spot where the Red Army started on 16 April 1945 under the command of Marshal Georgy Zhukov its »Run towards Berlin« that ended the war on 2 May 1945 with the unconditional surrender of Nazi-Germany’s capital.

Märkische Oder Zeitung: Totenstätte Oderbruch

7 October 2017

Berlin’s denied war mass graves in comparison to current war theatres such as Aleppo

We are proud and honored to announce that the photo series »Berlin Mass Graves – Reflections on Death« by necropolis projects art director Tim van Beveren received an honorable mention at the 2017 International Photography Awards, New York.

IPA – international photography awards

25 April 2017

The multi-media research project »Necropolis Berlin – Neukölln 1945«, as part of the necropolis project which intends to visualize and remember the »Battle of Berlin«  and the victims of war and tyranny invites to a Vernissage on 25 April 2017.

MP Dr. Fritz Felgentreu (SPD) who is head of Berlin’s war grave commission will speak about Berlin-Neukölln in 1945 and today.

The actor Günter Lamprecht, a Berlin time witness, will read from his memories. Afterward, he will discuss with the Mayor of Neukölln,  Dr. Franziska Giffey,  Dr. Ulrike von Pilar, “Médecins sans Frontières” and filmmaker Konstantin von zur Mühlen about 1945 and against forgetting. The evening will be hosted by Tim van Beveren, journalist and filmmaker. Students and alumni of  Prof. Dr. Susanne Junkers “necropolis-masterclass” will also be present.

16 April 2017

Today the 1st full-scale public necropolis project exhibition was opened. Simultaneous installations, pictures, drawings, photographs and the »core piece« of the project, the 17 minutes long multi-media installation »the triptych«  will be displayed at several locations in the city of Berlin.

Among those is the Cemetery at Columbiadamm (outside and inside the chapel), the Buschkrugallee Cemetery, both located in Berlin-Neukölln,  the Berlin Landeszentrale für Politische Bildung at the Amerika-Haus and in the Deutsch-Russisches Museum in Karlshorst.

Neuköllns Mayor, Dr. Franziska Giffey (SPD), did send a video message that will welcome all visitors to the exhibition.

Also, the Member of Parliament, Dr. Fritz Felgentreu (SPD), did send a video message to welcome the visitors:

The exhibitions on the two cemeteries will be open to the public daily until 2 May 2017 from 10:00 to 18:00 hrs.

see also:    Beuth-Magazin 02/2017 (PDF – in German language)

25 February 2017

16 February 2017

We are proud and honored to announce that today necropolis projects art director Tim van Beveren was awarded two honorable mentions for his black and white photo contribution to the 2017 Monochrome Photography Awards.

Congratulations, Tim.

6 January 2017

18 November 2016

Today 12 photographic exhibits from the necropolis project were on display at the Rotes Rathaus, Berlin by invitation of the city’s Senatskanzlei and Mayor Michael Müller.

The became part of an event organized by the European Academy Berlin and the Volksbund deutscher Kriegsgräberfürsorge e.V.

13 November 2015

The necropolis project had its first exhibition at the townhall Berlin-Neukölln upon invitation by the mayor, Dr. Franziska Giffey. A selection of 30 photographs by master students of visualization was on display. They depict the fonts »1945« which the students did find on the war-cemetery at Lilienthalstrasse in Berlin-Neukölln.

The exhibition was opened by mayor Dr. Franziska Giffey, former senator Wolfgang Wieland and the university’s vice president, Prof. Dr. Hans Gerber.

It will be open to the public until 30 November 2015.


From 14th of April until 30th of May 2018 the »necropolis-project« will be presented at the Gedenkstätte & Museum Seelower Höhen at the city of Seelow.

Gedenkstätte Seelower Höhen / © 2018 Tim van Beveren – Berlin

This site about 70 kilometers East of Berlin and close to the Polish border is dedicated to the memory of the biggest battle of WWII on German grounds. In April 1945 close to 1.000.000 soldiers of the Red Army commanded by Marshal Georgi Zhukov attacked the position known as the »Gates to Berlin« around the »Seelow Heights«. They were opposed by about 110.000 soldiers of the German 9th Army, commanded by General Theodor Busse.

The 16th of April 1945 marked the start of the last soviet military offensive against Nazi-Germany. It ended in Berlin with the city’s unconditional surrender on May 2nd, 1945. The attack was itself the opening phase of what later has become known as the »Battle of Berlin«.

Master-students and alumni from Berlin, comprised of 18 nations, visualized traces of remembrance and their reflections upon war, war death, destruction, loss and oblivion . They connected art history and literature over a period of 3.000 years starting with the Trojan War to today’s battlegrounds of Aleppo. The core exhibit is the multi-media installation, named »the triptych«, an audio-visual story-telling as a collage of photography, drawings and original film footage. The project’s intention is to encourage reflection through information, discovery and identification – against forgetting.


Gedenkstätte & Museum Seelower Höhen
Küstriner Strasse 28 a
15406 Seelow

Opening hours:

Tuesday – Sunday, 10:00 a.m. – 05:00 p.m.       (open also on holidays)


»SHOA«  – excerpt from »the triptych 2017«