Schlenkerla Dominikanerklause

Dominikanerklause around 1925

Old view of Dominikanerklause (before WW II)

History of Dominikanerklause

For many centuries the "Klause" was the house chapel of the dominican monastery of Bamberg (built in 1310). In the late 15th century a magnificant new gothic ceiling imagery was added. In the time of secularisation at the beginning of the 19th century, it was nationalized and used for the royal Bavarian military. 1926 the state leased it to Michael Graser, brewmaster and owner of Schlenkerla. Later it was bought by his son in law Jakob Trum. The complete story can be found in Tilmann Breuer's book Die Kunstdenkmäler von Bayern (German only).

Renovation 2011

Due to the long usage and most of all due to the cigarette smoke of the 20th century, the artful 15th century painting on the ceiling had been covered gradually. Finally, at the beginning of the 21st century the images could only be seen vaguely. Therefore Matthias Trum, the Great Grandson of Michael Graser, initaited a general renovation of the "Klause". Bamberg based Restauration Company Spitzner worked for several weeks on cleaning and restoring the neo-Gothic arch and paintings. Fortunately the underlain gold leaf ground - a relic of historic icon art - was undamaged, and so diplomated restorer Agens Kuhn and Marius Hermann were able to concentrate on mending leafes, branches and the numerous animals of the painting.

manual restauration

Patience necessary
Diplomated restorer Agnes Kuhn mends the multifaceted animal and plant depictions in weeks long precision work.

Canvases on the walls and the statues and angel figures were cleansed also. The cap stones received a new gold leaf ground by Herbert Liski. Last but not least all hand carvd furniture was renovated.

The team (restorer Agnes Kuhn, icon painter Marius Hermann, gold leaf grounder Herbert Liski, church painter apprentice Anna-Lena Walter) worked for three weeks on the renovation. Since January 29th 2011 the "Klause" shows its full beauty again. The images on the ceiling impress with their spatiality and diversity, e.g. each segment has its own type of leafs. The iconic gold leaf ground - a symbol of heaven for the artists of earlier centuries - shines through the images. Observant visitors can find various types of birds, fighting cocks, squirrels and all kind of exceptional elements, e.g. a monkey with a beer mug.

The guild lamps

The four iron lamps carry the signs of the guild of brewers, bakers, fishers and butchers, i.e. all necessary professions for a decent brewery pub. In addition a slogan for each guild is stated.

baker's guild lamp

Baker's Guild
Der Weckla Größe bringt nichts ein,
sie müßten vielmehr kleiner sein.

(english: Large buns bring no profit,
they should be smaller)

brewer's guild lamp

Brewer's Guild
Das Wasser ist das Element,
das der Brauer wohl am besten kennt.

(english: Water is the element,
which the brewer knows best)


butcher's guild lamp

Butcher's Guild
Die Metzger Zunft wär noch so groß,
brächt man als Fleisch die Knochen los.

(english: The guild would be twice as big,
if bones could be sold as meat)


fisher's guild lamp

Fisher's Guild
Will dir der Fisch ins Netz nicht rein,
dann schmeiß ihn tot mit einem Stein.

(english: If the fish does not enter your net,
kill it with a stone)