The restoration and expansion project for Museum De Lakenhal is ready to begin. The municipal council of Leiden agreed to provide the remainder of the funds necessary to realize the project. As of Monday 17 October, the museum will remain closed until a grand reopening in the spring of 2019.
Meta Knol, director of Museum De Lakenhal: “These plans have been in the making for a very long time, and the moment has finally arrived. Together with architect collaboration Julian Harrap Architects (restoration) and HappelCornelisseVerhoeve (expansion), Museum De Lakenhal will prove that a classical museum with a very long and distinguished history can be perfectly combined with a contemporary and daring style. The renewed museum will again place our fantastic collection of Leiden’s art, artistry and history on a pedestal. The public will discover a restored entry hall featuring all the facilities of a 21rst century, public-oriented museum. We look forward to sharing the result of this beautiful project with everyone in 2019.”
The full restoration and expansion program is expected to take two and a half years to complete. In the meantime, masterpieces from the collection will be exhibited in other museums, including in the Rijksmuseum, the Stedelijk Museum Alkmaar and soon in the Mauritshuis and the Frans Hals Museum as well, among others. After the Lakenhal is emptied, the contractors will begin their work in January 2017. Museum De Lakenhal is expected to open its doors to the public again in the spring of 2019. For the national Year of Rembrandt in 2019, the museum will host the exhibition The Young Rembrandt in autumn of that year, in collaboration with the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford.