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The mission of the Wende Museum is to preserve Cold War art, culture, and history from the Soviet Bloc countries, inspire a broad understanding of the period, and explore its enduring legacy.
Named for the Wende (pronounced "venda"), a German word meaning "turning point" or "change" that has come to describe the transformative period leading up to and following the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989, the Wende Museum:
- collects and preserves artwork, artifacts, archives, films, and personal histories from Cold War-era Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union relating to the period 1945-1991 that were, and to some extent remain, at risk of being obliterated;
- challenges and engages the public through experimental exhibitions and interdisciplinary programming inspired by the collection;
- illuminates the past and informs the present through creative collaborations with contemporary artists and designers; and
- promotes rigorous scholarship, educates students, and stimulates general interest through lectures, symposia, and publications.