The city of Hildesheim boasts two UNESCO world heritage sites and several culturally important institutions. In 2010 the St. Michaeliskirche (Church of St. Michael) celebrated its 1,000th anniversary, and the city and diocese of Hildesheim celebrated 1,200 years of existence in 2015. The Hildesheim Center for World Music, situated in a former church, is home to several thousand sound recordings, books on music ethnology and music instruments from all over the world. The Roemer- und Pelizaeus-Museum Hildesheim houses one of the world’s most important ancient Egypt collections, one of Europe’s oldest and most beautiful collections of ancient Peruvian artifacts, and a major paleontology collection.
The ARJ academy and conference itself will take place on the Kulturcampus Domäne Marienburg, a fortress dating back to the fifteenth century, now the home of Cultural Studies at the University of Hildesheim. The campus is reached by a ten-minute shuttle ride from the city, or a twenty-minute cycle alongside the river Innerste. Bicycles will be provided by the conference.
The renovation of the Domäne Marienburg to create the “Kulturcampus” (Culture Campus) of the University of Hildesheim is one of the most significant building projects of recent years.
The Domäne Marienburg in the southeast of Hildesheim looks back on a 650-year history. The Domäne was built by Bishop Heinrich III in 1346. After losing its military relevance, additional outbuildings and dwellings were added, and it was mainly used for agricultural purposes. In the 19th and early 20th century the Domäne Marienburg experienced an economic boom as an agricultural centre. An industrial aspect was added in the 20th century when a cannery and ice-cream factory were opened in the grounds of the Domäne.
Many medieval buildings had been preserved over the centuries, but the almost total destruction of central Hildesheim during World War II served to heighten its residents’ appreciation of the Domäne Marienburg. Apart from the rebuilding of a few churches in the city center, this is one of the few remaining buildings in the Hildesheim area that has survived from the High Middle Ages.
In 1993 the University of Hildesheim began acquiring parts of the property for its Faculty 2: Cultural Studies and Aesthetic Communication.
Nowadays, the Domäne Marienburg has protected status and has been renovated for the use of Faculty 2. Further buildings have been added, such as the newly constructed building for the Department of Theatre, Media and Popular Culture, which holds a modern, 200-square-meter black box theatre and the very latest stage machinery. The majority of seminar rooms have been modernized and equipped with state-of-the-art technology.
Recent renovations include the “white house”, which is home to the Cultural Policy and Philosophy departments. The Hofcafé, a cozy café with a charming garden for warmer days, was also built from scratch over recent years and is open to students and teachers at the University, as well as the countless tourists who flock to the Domäne Marienburg and its beautiful surroundings.