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Television series
Original title Aspects
Country of production GermanyGermany Germany
original language German
Year (s) since 1965
length 30-45 minutes
genre Culture
Theme music Play the chill
Moderation Current moderators

Former moderators

First broadcast October 17, 1965 on ZDF
Former logo of aspects

Aspects (own spelling: aspekte ) is a 45-minute weekly culture magazine on ZDF , which was moderated by Luzia Braun from 1993 to 2011 (from 2000 to 2011, alternating with Wolfgang Herles ) and, in addition to art, also addresses the background of politics . From 2012 to 2013, Katty Salié , alternating with Tobias Schlegl , moderated the 30-minute show. On February 7, 2014, the broadcast time was extended by 15 minutes. Aspects has since been recorded live on tape and with the audience. The film clips are complemented by performances by artists and conversations with people from the cultural scene. In addition, Jo Schück has been part of the moderator team since 2014 .

The current broadcast slot (Fridays around midnight) has an average of 1.1 million viewers. For many years was a section of the theme song as the first symphony by Sergei Prokofiev used. The title Aspectacle by the Cologne band Can became a signature tune for some time from February 1978. Until 2012 a track called Play the Chill by Phat Daddy from the Extreme Music Library CD series was used, which was reworked by ZDF. Since 2012, a composition by Seeed keyboarder Torsten Reibold has served as the title melody. According to ZDF, the program costs around 91,000 euros per issue.


From October 17, 1965, Walther Schmieding broadcasts three programs under the title Culture Report. Since January 1, 1966, the program has been running every two weeks under the still current name of aspects - information from cultural life . Schmieding was awarded the " Golden Camera " by Hörzu in 1967 for providing a generally understandable access to theater, music, art, literature, cinema and cultural politics .

In 1969, the former mirror - and Stern -Redakteur Reinhart Hoffmeister editorial director and host of the program, which dissolves under his direction from the more conservative understanding of art and converts the politicized magazine, the critics insults of "left culture war" to "Red cell aspects" met with become. Hoffmeister deals with topics that have not yet been included in the “Culture” section: anti-authoritarian education, swimming, youth rebellion, media criticism, sex wave and - at the time badly reputed - monument protection. The later very successful ZDF campaign “Citizens Save Your Cities” was launched by aspects. A guideline for founding citizens' initiatives causes displeasure among the ZDF program managers.

The scandal ensued on February 27, 1974, when the writer and later member of the Bundestag Gerhard Zwerenz claimed that the police tortured prisoners in connection with the house-to-door war in Frankfurt; as a result, Hoffmeister was first given notice without notice and was banned from the ZDF, but was then discontinued under pressure from the PEN Club and the general public. The human rights violations alleged by Zwerenz prove to be tenable insofar as the officials involved are sentenced in court.

From 1975 to 1977 the magazine was designed alternately by Monika Meynert , Wiltrud Mannfeld and Wolfgang M. Ebert . While Mannfeld focuses on youth protest, Ebert brings action art and modern architecture.

In 1978, Dieter Schwarzenau followed as editor-in-chief , who implemented the conversion of the program into a more audience-friendly program, which was requested by the ZDF program director, which is now broadcast weekly with changing broadcast dates. A separation of editorial and moderation leads to a frequent change of moderators Alexander U. Martens , Christina von Braun , Manuela Reichart , Anne Linsel and Hannes Keil , which is unusual for aspects . Keil paid particular attention to the visual design of the program, taking a minimalist approach. Peter W. Jansen , who was called a cinema critic by Schwarzenau, became a recognized authority in the German film business with his “Kino-Note” , which 10 years later served comedians like Olli Dittrich as a template for parodies. In addition, literature will be a new focus of the magazine in which Eastern Bloc authors and dissidents in particular have their say. The literary critic Marcel Reich-Ranicki is making his first attempts at aspects in order to continue The Literary Quartet as an independent program. Schwarzenau was dismissed as press spokesman for ZDF in mid-1988 .

It was followed in September 1988 by Johannes Willms , who accompanied the time of cultural upheaval in West and East and did not limit himself to observing art, but had art films made himself. After perestroika, the entry of capitalism into Russia is also discussed.

When Willms became head of the SZ feuilleton in August 1992, aspects was only included in the program every 14 days and moved from the traditional Friday date to Tuesday evening. Willms' successor is Manfred Eichel , who had made the programs “Kultur aktuell” and “Kulturreport” for 17 years on NDR television in Hanover and Hamburg. In 1992 ZDF brought him to Mainz as head of aspects , the “Literary Quartet” and the feature editorial team “Literature and Art”. Up until the beginning of 2000, he was responsible for more than 500 cultural magazines for ARD and ZDF in a quarter of a century and moderated most of them himself - in addition to his constant commitment as a maker of aspects .

Since October 1993, the magazine, shortened to 30 minutes, has been broadcast weekly on the old slot. Aspects is dedicated to the current varieties of culture in addition to the mainstream topics such as film and bestsellers, social affairs and politics. In terms of program, discoveries, i.e. still very young, relatively unknown creatives, are presented - and naturally placed alongside the greats of the guild. The topics focus on current art and contemporary music, on experimental theater and dance theater. The “Aspect Literature Prize” is being upgraded by a new young jury, a spectacular award ceremony at the Frankfurt Book Fair and detailed portraits of the award-winning authors in the program itself.

Luzia Braun has been part of the magazine's moderation team since 1993 as the successor to Carola Wedel .

2000 the show moves to Berlin; Wolfgang Herles becomes head of the aspects editorial team and, alongside Luzia Braun, moderator. The focus of the program on Kultur-Magazin expands at a glance, which now also addresses background politics outside of the day-to-day events with solid research. Newly added are sections such as the Aspects series of articles on the subject of the future under the title Aspects the day after tomorrow and special programs such as the “Blue Sofa” interview series at the Frankfurt Book Fair. In 25 contributions since 2000, the authors have devoted themselves to topics such as artificial intelligence, genetic engineering, nutrition of the future, identity, surveillance, nano-technology and the aging of society under the title “The happy old people”.

In July 2011, Wolfgang Herles hands over the management of the show to the non-moderator Christhard Läpple and from September 2011 to May 2015 he moderates the literary program “ Das Blaue Sofa ”, which emerged from aspects, once a month at the same slot. Luzia Braun becomes deputy editor-in-chief and moderates alone from July to December 2011, before she also decides to leave.

Since January 13, 2012, the show has been moderated by Katty Salié . Tobias Schlegl occasionally stood in front of the camera as a substitute . On January 1, 2013, the editors' aspects became part of the newly established Kultur Berlin editorial team. Daniel Fiedler became the editorial manager . In February 2014 the program was greatly expanded. The broadcasting time has been extended by 15 to 45 minutes and, previously only presented with a moderator in the studio, has since taken place with an audience. The team of moderators was supplemented by Jo Schück and the recorded program was presented alternately by two of the three moderators, who talk to artists and people from the cultural scene after making films. Since then there have also been live performances by artists on the show. Tobias Schlegl ended his television career in September 2016, since then Salié and Schück have always moderated as a duo.

Editor in chief

Culture Berlin

Aspects online

Aspects presented extensively on the Internet pages of the ZDF . In addition to texts, images and videos for the current programs, there are some online extras in the video: “Tatort Kultur” (strange things in art: installations, painting, photography and more), “Read: book tips” and “Hartschnitt” (current film tips ).

The blue sofa

Sönke Wortmann on the blue sofa at the Frankfurt Book Fair 2006

Since 1999 there has been an aspect at the book fairs in Frankfurt and Leipzig under the name of the blue sofa .

An author is interviewed about his latest work on the blue sofa in 15 to 30 minutes. The interviews are made available online on the ZDF website. Selected ones will be shown in the 3sat program or in The Long Night of the Blue Sofa in the ZDF night program.

For years the blue sofa stood on an oversized open book. It was about the novel The Elective Affinities by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe . Since 2010 the blue sofa has had a new stage design. It is now on an oversized pile of books.

From September 16, 2011, ZDF also had its own literary program entitled The Blue Sofa , in which Wolfgang Herles went on a journey with the piece of furniture. In every program he met writers at the place where they worked or at the setting of the novel and presented new literary publications. A total of about 75 writers were guests. According to ZDF, the half-hour production cost around 80,000 euros. With the last issue on May 1, 2015, the program was discontinued because Herles retired in late summer 2015. At the beginning of October 2015, a revival of the literary quartet became the follow-up broadcast.


  • 2016: Echo in the “Partner of the Year” category.

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. New "Aspects" presenter . Spiegel Online, November 24, 2011
  2. News programs and magazines - profiles and costs. (No longer available online.) ZDF , August 28, 2014, archived from the original on December 3, 2016 ; accessed on August 30, 2014 . Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  3. Curriculum Vitae ( Memento of the original from January 3, 2012 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. on the personal homepage of Christhard Läpple, accessed on March 14, 2012  @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  4. Who does aspects? on, accessed on March 14, 2012
  5. ^ "Kultur Berlin": Daniel Fiedler is to head the new editorial team , accessed on January 11, 2013