Historian and cultural politician Christoph Stölzl died
Created: 2023-01-11Updated: 2023-01-11, 5:09 p.m
Christoph Stölzl, founding director of the Exile Museum, is standing at Anhalter Bahnhof.
© Annette Riedl/dpa/archive image
He himself blamed chance for many facets of his professional life.
History, culture and politics always played a role.
Now Christoph Stölzl has died at the age of 78.
Berlin/Weimar – The historian and former Berlin Senator for Science and Culture Christoph Stölzl is dead. The CDU politician died on Tuesday at the age of 78 in Evenhausen, Bavaria, as the Franz Liszt Music Academy in Weimar confirmed on Wednesday.
In addition to numerous other functions in culture and politics, Stölzl was president of the university until 2022.
Born in Westheim near Augsburg in 1944, Stölzl grew up in Munich's educated middle class.
He studied history, literature and sociology.
At the age of 36, Stölzl became director of the Munich City Museum.
"As a young team, we banged our heads and provoked with exhibitions," he recalled in an interview with the dpa.
In 1987, Stölzl became the founding director of the German Historical Museum in Berlin.
He remained in the position until 1999.
A year later, Stölzl switched to journalism as deputy editor-in-chief and head of the features section at Die Welt.
In the years that followed, he worked in various positions at universities, for example in Berlin and Weimar.
After the turbulent resignation of the director Peter Schäfer, the historian worked as a confidante at the Jewish Museum in Berlin.
Most recently, he was the founding director of the exile museum planned for Berlin.
He also worked on numerous committees of other cultural institutions.
The news of Stölzl's death triggered numerous reactions in the cultural world.
The Schloss Neuhardenberg Foundation honored "energy, tirelessness and sincere devotion".
The Musikhochschule Weimar spoke of a "person for whom kindness, humility and modesty were just as important maxims in life as knowledge of the connections in the world, of historical contexts, above all of art and music".
The Exile Museum called Stölzl a "committed comrade-in-arms, clever advisor, experienced exhibition organizer".
The political Stölzl was only briefly organized in the FDP and joined the Senate in 2000 as a non-party senator for science, research and culture on a CDU ticket.
Membership followed a year later, after which Stölzl was also CDU state leader and on the federal executive board.
In his political career, he repeatedly encountered strong opposition with extremely polarizing statements.