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Blood, sweat and beers

The former KINDL brewery building in Berlin’s Neukölln district has recently been refurbished and now shines with a fresh lustre. With a total area of over 5000 m², it also incorporates a new glazed staircase offering panoramic views over Germany’s capital.

The three storey red brick building traces its roots back to the early 20th century. From 1930 to 2005, it became famous as the home of “Berliner Kindl” beer which at one time was brewed in the largest “coppers” (brew kettles) in Europe.

In 2011, the German-Swiss couple Burkhard Varnholt and Salome Grisard-Varnholt, both passionate art collectors, purchased the sacred, historic structure with the objective of converting it into an art gallery. With a clear architectural concept and solid financing, the two art lovers set about leaving their own unique footprint on the global art scene. Andreas Fiedler, the dedicated Swiss curator and art educator, was appointed artistic director.

The ensemble of buildings were transformed with enormous care and a sophisticated architectural vision to produce a wide variety of spatial concepts that enable the art complex to present a diverse range of art objects.

The most eye-catching feature of the eastern side of the KINDL is the new foyer with a structural glazing facade from GIP GLAZING. The overall impression is of being transported back to the era of Art DECO. Directly adjacent to the foyer, a staircase crafted from glass and concrete extends from the cellar to the top floor – almost appearing to float unsupported. The futuristic extension provides a striking architectural counterpoint to the solidity of the historic main building. The use of “glass swords”, as a high quality alternative to metal posts, and specially designed point holders creates an organic enveloping design. The large glass area and its minimalistic point holders allow visitors on the staircase to enjoy a spectacular panoramic view over Berlin.

The employees of GIP GmbH would like to thank the KINDL - Centre for Contemporary Art for the opportunity to be part of this project! And the reward for the team’s hard work is close at hand – a cold beer in the brand new KINDL beer garden.

Project details:

Type of building:
Type of project:
Cultural and educational complex
Post construction with laminated safety glass (ESG)
Glazing: VSG BI-Combiset comprising 2x ESG H 10 mm with Fischer Zykon point holders
Fischer Zykon point holders (FZP-G-Z)

Project participants:

grisard’architektur ETH SIA AG
System supplier:
Specialist contractor:


Federal Republic of Germany
Berlin Neukölln


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