March 26, 2003 - Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen - The inauguration of the renovated …
March 26, 2003

The inauguration of the renovated …

The inauguration of the renovated ...

The inauguration of the renovated ...

The inauguration of the renovated Boijmans van Beuningen Museum on 10th May 2003

After radical renovations and the building of an extension, the
modernized Boijmans Van Beuningen Museum now has considerably more space available for the public. Not only has the museum been extended, it has also undergone radical changes. In addition to the new wing, the illustrious Belgian architect’s firm ‘Paul Robbrecht and Hilde Daem Architects’ also designed a beautiful sculpture garden, a new entrance, an extensive library, a stylish shop and a prints gallery.

The most eye-catching feature of the extension is the 123.5 metres long facade, clad with glass panels of cathedral glass. The transparent skin of this new wing forms a beautiful contrast with the original brick building, which was designed by architect Van der Steur and the rooms by architect Bodon. The relation between visual art and architecture is very important to Robbrecht and Daem Architects. The architecture is subservient to the art. With Robbrecht and Daem’s design an ensemble has been created that radiates grandeur and allure. Not only does this building fulfil its purpose as a museum, it also has a municipal function: it forms a link between the Westersingel and the Museumpark.

The new exhibition rooms are located behind the long facade on the street side, and include a permanent exhibition room for the surrealists and modern art. When viewed from the street side, the building gives a transparent impression: there is a view of, successively, the library, the new exhibition rooms, the innovative digital depot and transparent working areas. Via the courtyard, in which the sculpture garden is located, the visitor arrives in the high, spacious entrance area. There, you can begin your journey into the history of art, from the Middle Ages to the present.

Demolishing, renovating and adding

Three aspects were important when extending the Boijmans Van Beuningen Museum: demolishing, renovating and adding. The former restaurant and museum shop, and the temporary offices at the old entrance were demolished. The prints gallery and the Bodon room were renovated, and important sections of the Van der Steur building were restored to their original state. Finally, not only was 1450 m2 of exhibition space added around the Bodon section, but also working, study and depot space. The new extension of Boijmans Van Beuningen gives an excellent representation of the many facets of the museum and the collection.

Opening ceremony

On Saturday, 10th May 2003 at 10.00 hours, Mayor Ivo Opstelten will open the renovated Boijmans van Beuningen Museum. Simultaneously, this will be the starting shot for two weekends full of activities for the public.

The Origin of Things

As of 10th May 2003, the exhibition ‘The Origin of Things’ will also be on view at the Boijmans Van Beuningen Museum. This exhibition focuses on the early history of industrially designed products. On the basis of designs, maquettes and prototypes, this spectacular exhibition provides insight into the way in which designers develop their ideas into products. In this manner, an international overview is formed, starting with wallpaper and fabric designs by William Morris and ending with the interior of the Prada in New York by Rem Koolhaas.

Exhibition Imaging Ulysses by Richard Hamilton

As of 10th May 2003, there is also an exhibition of the works of the versatile British artist Richard Hamilton (London, 1922). He is known, in particular, as the founder of British Pop Art. For more than 50 years Hamilton was preoccupied with James Joyce’s much discussed novel
Ulysses, which he wished to provide with illustrations. Imaging Ulysses contains all studies and graphs which have been produced since the start of this extremely personal project in 1948.

In addition to these exhibitions, several other presentations will also be opened on 10th May 2003: a presentation by Olafur Eliasson, the Design Prize Rotterdam 2003, the history of the Land of Hoboken (the vicinity of the museum) and a presentation by Robbrecht & Daem Architects regarding their collaboration with various artists.

Note for the editorial staff:

On 8th May 2003 a press conference will be held concerning the renovated Boijmans Van Beuningen Museum. You will receive a separate invitation for this shortly. For more information and photographs please contact Mirjam Gouweloos, Publicity & Marketing department of Boijmans Van Beuningen, telefoonnummer 010-4419561; e-mail or
visit the website

Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen
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