Medusa Hall

The ceilings of the first floor exhibition halls were painted in 1908 with stylized Cnidarians. The paintings were inspired by the coloured lithographs from Ernst Haeckel’s books Kunstformen der Natur (Art forms of nature), System der Medusen (Cnidarian Systematics) and Tiefsee-Medusen (Deep Sea Cnidarians). It is probable that Adolf Giltsch, Haeckel’s lithographer, was responsible for the stylized images. During radical renovation work on the building in the late 1950s and early 1960s, the ceilings were painted over. Art nouveau had gone out of fashion. In 1996, however, the ceilings were restored, thanks to the generous support of the executive chairman of the Jenoptik company, Professor Dr. h.c. Lothar Späth.

During the reconstruction Periphylla periphylla (Peron & Lesueur, 1809) during the reconstruction of the ornamental tentacles

After being uncovered and precision-cleaned Toreuma bellagemma Haeckel, 1881 after being uncovered and precision-cleaned

After restoration Toreuma bellagemma Haeckel, 1881 after restoration

After restoration Atolla wyvillei Haeckel, 1880 after restoration