Winfried Nerdinger

Prof. Dr.-Ing.

TUM Department of Architecture
Former professor of history of architecture

born August 24, 1944

Scientific work

Winfried Nerdinger made significant contributions to art and architecture history research as well as to the public awareness of the importance of architecture. He focused his research on the architecture of the period from the 18th to the 21st century, the architecture and art history of Munich and the history of architectural presentation. He earned particular renown during his time as professor of architecture history, a position that was created specifically for him at TUM. Here, together with the architecture museum, he created the largest special and research archive for architecture in Germany, which was integrated into Munich’s Pinakothek der Moderne museum in 2002. Under his supervision, the museum – which has become a unique institution in Germany combining collections, teachings and research – came to display a broad and diverse program of different exhibitions. The spectrum ranges from historical topics to the presentation of current architectural trends and engineering achievements. Winfried Nerdinger put together more than 70 exhibitions and recorded these for posterity in seminal catalogs. His projects also frequently brought him into contact with the architecture of National Socialism. In 2012, he was elected founding director of the NS Documentation Center in Munich, which was just being established. He was therefore entrusted with the important task of establishing a permanent collection on the history of National Socialism in Munich.


150 Alumni Stories - TUM Emeritus of Excellence Winfried Nerdinger: "We must face up to our history"

Short biography

1965 – 1971 Study of architecture, TUM
1979 Doctorate in art history
1985 Appointment, McGill University, Montreal
1986 – 2012 Professor of history of architecture and director of the Architecture Museum, TUM
1989 Appointment, German Museum of Architecture (DAM), Frankfurt am Main
since 1995  Director of the Architecture Museum of Swabia, Augsburg
since 2012  Founding director of the NS Documentation Center, Munich


Memberships and honors

Associate member, Association of German Architects (BDA)

President, International Confederation of Architectural Museums (1989-1994)

Director, Department of Visual Arts, Bavarian Academy of Fine Arts (since 2004)

Chair, Alvar-Aalto-Gesellschaft, Munich (since 2006)

Head of German Research Foundation project “Hitler’s Architects: Troost, Speer, Fick and Giesler” (since 2007)

Member of the board of directors, Pinakothek der Moderne (2002-2012


Exhibitions (extract)

Frei Otto – Leicht bauen, natürlich gestalten (Lightweight construction, natural form) (2005)

Ort und Erinnerung – Nationalsozialismus in München (Place and memory: National Socialism in Munich) (2006-2007)

Architektur wie sie im Buche steht. Fiktive Bauten und Städte in der Literatur (Architecture by the book: fictional buildings and cities in literature) (2006-2007)

Munio Weinraub und Amos Gitai – Architektur und Film in Israel (2008-2009)

Geschichte der Rekonstruktion – Konstruktion der Geschichte (History of reconstruction – construction of history) (2010)

Der Architekt – Geschichte und Gegenwart eines Berufsstandes (The architect – the occupation in history and the present day) (2012-2013)


Preise und Ehrungen

  • First Class Knight of the Order of the White Rose of Finland (2002)
  • Architecture Prize from the Bavarian state Capital of Munich (2006)
  • Medal “München leuchtet”, culture prize from the Bavarian Capital of Munich (2006)
  • Leo von Klenze Medal, supreme building authority, Bavarian State Ministry of the Interior (2009)
  • Bavarian Architecture Prize and Bavarian State Prize for Architecture (2011)
  • Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany (2017)

You can download "Explanations of honors and awards" here [PDF]


Key publications

Nerdinger W: 100 Jahre Deutscher Werkbund 1907/2007. München: Prestel, 2007.

Nerdinger W: Ort und Erinnerung. Nationalsozialismus in München. München: Pustet, 2006.

Nerdinger W: Leo von Klenze – Architekt zwischen Kunst und Hof 1784-1964.
München: Prestel, 2000.

Nerdinger W: Der Architekt Walter Gropius. Berlin: Gebrüder Mann, 1996.

Nerdinger W: Bauen im Nationalsozialismus – Bayern 1933-1945. München: Prestel, 1993.