Glass Ark Graces Freiberg's Schlossplatz for Humboldt Year, 2019

Glas Ark
In the anniversary year marking the 250th birthday of Friedrich Alexander von Humboldt (1769-1859), TU Bergakademie Freiberg will honor its most famous graduate with a wide spectrum of events.

The first highlight was the placement of a Glass Ark on Freiberg's Schlossplatz on January 28. The ark is intended to commemorate the numerous voyages of the famous globetrotter and explorer. Between January 28 and April 1, 2019, the Glass Ark created by the landscape conservation trust 'Mittleres Elstertal e.V.' will make a stop in Freiberg. Since June 2016, the ark has been on a journey through the culturally and environmentally significant regions of Central Germany. Displayed at selected locations, the Glass Ark is intended to remind people of the fragility of nature and our role in protecting it. The glass component of this work is cradled in a five-meter wooden hand that was designed by Bavarian artist, Christian Schmidt. In a slightly inclined position, the glass & wood ensemble symbolizes how the preservation of our natural and cultural landscape is in human hands. At the same time, the composition evokes a flowing movement in which the Glass Ark seems to slip away from the wooden hand...with the responsibility passing over to the observer. It is an expression of our current understanding of nature as a cosmos in which everything, from the smallest to the largest, is interwoven with one another and of which we are an integral part – an understanding shaped by Alexander von Humboldt. TU Bergakademie Freiberg will bid farewell to the Glass Ark on March 29, 2019 with a special event.

For June 14, the day on which Humboldt commenced his studies in 1791, a celebration in honor of the great scientist and naturalist is planned for the Alte Mensa in Freiberg. On his birthday, September 14, Freiberg’s Historical Miner's & Smelter's Guild will hold a parade to trace the footsteps of the Bergakademie's most celebrated alumnus. A concert that evening with South American pieces of music will commemorate his travels through that continent.

For further information, please visit:

The Glass Ark on the Castle Square
The Glass Ark on the Castle Square