The former summer residence of the Bavarian royals – Nymphenburg Palace – may become home to the new VIPs of the 21st century, immigrants and refugees, if the demands of one group are to be accepted.
Members of an artists collective vandalised the entrance of a wing of the vast palace in Munich, Germany this week with red paint, writing “enter” on the door and pasting cartoons of migrants on the ancient walls. While the palace is the former summer residence of the royal rulers of Bavaria, it is still today the home of the present heir of the House of Wittelsbach, Franz von Bayern, the Duke of Bavaria.
Performance artist and political activist Wolfram P. Kastner launched the campaign, and daubed the red paint on the door because of his concern that one wing of the palace has been empty for over a year and he feels the grand building would be best used to house migrants. Local paper Abend Zeitung reports the wing was until recently the home of the offices of the University of Munich’s Institute of Genetics and Microbiology, which has since moved to new accommodation.
Speaking to journalists at the palace, Kastner said of the empty wing: “Here you could accommodate a lot of people, and young people could be cared for in the nearby schools… In the short term single women with children or female unaccompanied minors can be accommodated within the asylum procedure”.
Unfortunately for Kastner and the migrants and refugees he is desparate to help, his plans may yet be confounded. While he was appealing to the city to make the change, it transpires the different parts of the vast palace, divided since the end of the days of the Bavarian monarchy belong to different government departments. The wing in question belongs to the Bavarian Ministry of Culture, and while it presently stands empty they are working in preparation to open the new national natural history museum there within the next few years.
Even if Kastner insisting the local government could get past the lack of appropriate fire escapes, sanitation, and other facilities required for legal dwellings at the site, and if the hotel for immigrants went ahead, the palace would by far not be the strangest place found in Germany for refugee accommodation. Breitbart London reported earlier this year on the remarkable plan of the township of Schwerte in North Rhine-Westphalia to convert former barrack blocks in the infamous Buchenwald concentration camp into migrant accommodation, infuriating pro-immigrant campaigners.
Birgit Naujocks, the Director of the North Rhine-Westphalian Refugee Council said “the plans recall bad memories and sinister pictures”. Elsewhere, former country inns and hotels have been turned over to migrant housing.
The palace protest and vandalism isn’t the first time artist Kastner has hit the headlines for his attacks on the symbols of old Germany. Bild reported in April on his antics after he wrenched a bronze bust of former German president general field marshal Paul von Hindenburg from the wall of a monastery, dumping the head instead in a garden, adorned with a nazi-swastika monocle. He was protesting against one small German town which had failed to strike Adolph Hitler from it’s roll of honorary citizens.