The Barkenhoff Foundation of Worpswede was founded in 1981 as an independent foundation under civil law. Its founders are the State of Lower Saxony, the State of Bremen, the Administrative District of Osterholz, the Municipality of Worpswede, the community of Vogeler’s heirs, Hans-Herman Rief, the Barkenhoff Friends’ Association and the Friends of Worpswede.
The establishment of the Foundation was preceded by a non-party initiative across German Federal Lands boundaries devoted to saving the Barkenhoff from further ruin and eventual demolition.
The purpose of the Foundation is to preserve and maintain the artistic estate of Heinrich Vogeler as well as the collected works of the Worpswede Archive. This work is documented in the permanent exhibition and the changing presentations in the Heinrich-Vogeler-Museum, which along with the Archive is under academic supervision.