Snow – a thing of the past? The cultural history of winter in Leipzig

12.11.2021 – 27.2.2022

Böttchergäßchen Building, Böttchergäßchen 3, 04109 Leipzig

WINTER – loved, hated, longed for and feared; pleasure and pain; no season polarises as much as winter. Pleasure and pain are closely connected here.

What happens to winter in times of climate change and its slow disappearance? What becomes of the world of wintery images and its aura if there is no snow any more in the long run? How do man and nature fill this void and how can we replace it, if necessary?

Leipzig was never considered a city of snowy winters or of winter sports. Nonetheless, the rhythm of life in the city and of everyday life was also shaped by this season and many people of Leipzig are actively involved in winter sports. 

Therefore, the Museum of City History, for the first time, dedicates an exhibition to this rough and contemplative season and sheds light on all facets of winter from nostalgia, to infrastructure, cultural history and climate concerns. 

Especially in Leipzig, the winter and the end of the year also stand for the Christmas season which is highly commercialised and traditionally celebrated with a lot of atmosphere. It is a natural phenomenon and involves lots of adverse weather conditions and, for this reason, it is challenging for each individual, as well as for urban public services and the urban community. But winter is not only a period of darkness and loneliness but it is also a time of music, ice-skating as well as fancy-dress and athletes’ balls. More specifically, it also brings culinary and sensual delights.

With an abundance of various items, images and media (as well as experience stations for young and older visitors), the Museum of City History shows the beautiful and awful sides of winter, and examines its taste and risks – entirely without a doctor or pharmacist.