Four coloured versions of the dome of light seen between 1936-1938 courtesy of Michael Sabadi, artist and owner of the unique Rekonquista art gallery in Nuremberg.
Owner to the rights of the original black and white photographs, Herr Sabadi has produced these images for the first time in real colour.
The visibly lower spectators’ stands on the other three sides were divided by 34 tower-like structures, housing toilet facilities.
From left to right: i) The well-known photograph of Walter Hege from 1938 showing the “Zeppelintribüne” in colour; ii) The “dome of light” back in 1937 with focused-light view; iii) the “Dome of light” of 1936 with a spread-light view for comparison and iv) distant view of the “dome of light” back in 1937..The gold-plated and laurel-wreathed swastika which once crowned Albert Speer’s Zeppelin tribune represented the apotheosis and fulfilment of the swastikas which are still present, but sublimated in the decorative scheme of the tribune’s interior.It was hard to imagine that rusting heaps of rubble could communicate these heroic inspirations which Hitler admired in the monuments of the past.By using special materials and by applying certain principles of statics, we should be able to build structures which even in a state of decay, after hundreds or (such were our reckonings) thousands of years would more or less resemble Roman models.Personally, I am most impressed in the opening scene when the Germans are heard giving the same war-cry as that heard in It was September and time for the annual party rally again.
This time London instructed the British ambassador to attend, and Henderson saw for himself the spectacle of aggregate manpower as hundreds of thousands of brown-shirted party automatons paraded at Nuremberg.
The site of the rallies on the outskirts of Nuremberg, particularly the enormous Zeppelin Meadow, was conspicuous for its monumental architecture and landscaping.
The Nazis pioneered elaborate staging and lighting techniques to give the annual celebrations the character of sacred religious rituals with Hitler in the role of High Priest.
To illustrate my ideas I had a romantic drawing prepared.
It showed what the reviewing stand on the Zeppelin Field would look like after generations of neglect, overgrown with ivy, its columns fallen, the walls crumbling here and there, but the outlines still clearly recognisable.
In that case, the allusion to the Rebel victory as a quasi-fascist one suggested the moral hollowness of their victory achieved by military force, while setting the stage for their defeat at the start of the second film.