St. Norbert

St. Norbert

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St. Norbert is a church belonging to a catholic parish, located in Berlin Schöneberg, near the John F Kennedy Square.

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The building as we see it now is an eclectic combination of the original parish church built at the beginning of the XX century, and a modern structure put on top of it.

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The original church was built for a protestant community and was designed in a historic style, mostly drawing from neo-romanesque. It was almost completely destroyed during the bombing of Berlin in World War II, leaving the whole front facade in rubbles.

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After the war ended, the ground fell under the posession of Schöneberg’s catholic community and it was decided to rebuild the old building with a new twist.

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The job was given to an architect Hermann Fehling, who proceeded to combine what was left from the old church building with his new vision. The new parts of the church are fully modern, made out of concrete and scantily dispursed glass. The building lacks ornamentation or color and is very unrefined. On the one hand the design is very simple, on the other the lines are harsh and suggestive, which places the design of St. Norbert between brutalism and expressionism, although it is hard to say how much the final form was driven by the architect’s pure imagination, an how much by the need of incorporating the old church into the structure.

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