The Photography Museum (now Photography Collection) at the Münchner Stadtmuseum opened in 1963. Boasting nearly 1 million photos out of some three million items, it ranks among the leading collections in Europe. The Collection covers everything from the early days of photography in the 1840s right up to today’s digital images, with a particular focus on the 19th century and the period up to the 1980s. Our holdings are continuously evolving through the acquisition of contemporary photographic works.

The Collection spans the entire history of photography both as an artistic, narrative, and creative medium and as an application in the fields of fashion, reportage, advertising, design, and science. It also features private photography (snapshots, photo albums) and popular keepsakes (photo jewelry and ceramics). Its more traditional genres include natural, urban, and industrial landscapes, portraits (individual and group portraits, nudes), photographs documenting historical events, artistic experiments and still life photography. It also shines a spotlight on certain priority areas, i.e. travel photography, war photography and art reproductions.

Main Activities

Our Photography Collection has a foot in all the museum’s key activities: exhibition, conservation, collection, research, and communication. As the museum is undergoing a major refurbishment, its regular program of temporary exhibitions will move to external venues until further notice. In addition, our core activities include conservation projects and the ongoing expansion of the Collection, along with research into and the public dissemination of its contents. The latter involves the publication of books and the provision of digital access via our Online Collection (German only) and partner photo databases including the Bildarchiv Preußischer Kulturbesitz (Visual Archive of the Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation) and the Deutsche Fotothek. Our new research site, Reframing the Collection, addresses methodological issues arising from our work and contextualizes large volumes of previously unresearched objects.

Reframing the Collection

In 2024, the Photography Collection established Reframing the Collection, a research site which addresses methodological issues arising from our work, seeks to delve deeper into the backgrounds of our photographers, and also provides contextual information on large volumes of hitherto neglected objects. It is maintained by research fellows of the Alfried Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach Foundation’s "Museum Curators for Photography" program.


The Alfried Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach Foundation’s "Museum Curators for Photography" Fellowship Program
The Alfried Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach Foundation has awarded the "Museum Curators for Photography" Fellowship Program since 2000. It offers museum-specific training to aspiring photography curators at three photography collections in German-speaking countries. Fellows are given the opportunity to undertake six-month placements at the Münchner Stadtmuseum, the Museum Folkwang in Essen and the Fotomuseum Winterthur in Switzerland. Since 2010, the fellowships have also included a final six-month internship abroad at either the Getty Research Institute in Los Angeles, the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, or the Centre Pompidou in Paris. The stipend is 58,000 euros and is awarded every two years.


The Münchner Stadtmuseum holds the copyright for works by Gabriele von Arnim Philipp Kester, Hermann Landshoff, Stefan Moses, Barbara Niggl Radloff, Rose von Rad, and Regina Relang.


Please contact our Central Image Archive for inquiries about images in connection with planned publications. For loans and all other inquiries, please contact the collection via e-mail. Please submit your inquiry six months before the commencement of your project.

Plan Your Visit

Opening hours

Although the Münchner Stadtmuseum's exhibitions closed on January 8, 2024, for a complete renovation, the cinema and the Stadtcafé will remain open to visitors until June 2027.

Information to Von Parish Costume Library in Nymphenburg

Filmmuseum München – Screenings
Tuesday / Wednesday 6.30 pm and 9 pm
Thursday 7 pm
Friday / Saturday 6 pm and 9 pm
Sunday 6 pm

Getting here

S/U-Bahn station: Marienplatz
U-Bahn station: Sendlinger Tor
Bus 52/62 stop: St.-Jakobs-Platz


St.-Jakobs-Platz 1
80331 München
Phone +49-(0)89-233-22370
Fax +49-(0)89-233-25033
E-Mail stadtmuseum(at)
E-Mail filmmuseum(at)

Ticket reservation Phone +49-(0)89-233-24150