After a great deal of flirting and a long courtship, two old acquaintances have begun their adventure together.
You’ve known them for a while, but this year they present themselves to you in a new light: renewed and united. Familiar, yet different. On 29 March 2018, the Frans Hals Museum, with its outstanding collection of Old Masters, ‘marries’ De Hallen Haarlem, the museum for contemporary and modern art in Haarlem. From that moment on, two become one as this ‘one museum at two locations’ will now be known as: Frans Hals Museum.
As in any good marriage, the loving couple also remain strong individuals. They challenge one another just as much as they complement each other. This interaction makes Haarlem crackle with new prospects, surprising insights and unexpected discoveries.
One thing is certain: the offspring in the form of a renewed programmed will be versatile, colourful and unexpected. This sophisticated programme has three layers: High-quality exhibitions about art from the Golden Age are interspersed with unusual expositions by leading contemporary artists; and – the third offering – so-called ‘fusion exhibitions’, where old art and contemporary art are brought together, showing that these two worlds are closer together than you may think. With these three angles, the renovated Frans Hals Museum offers visitors a unique and stimulating mix of tradition and future, from brushstrokes to pixels. We hope that this will help you look differently and see more.
As of now, we will be renovating our house, our nest, our two locations – Hal (on the Grote Markt) and Hof (on the Groot Heiligland) – so that we can welcome you even better than before. The historical qualities of both buildings form the starting point for the design, which is being carried out by the award-winning New York architecture and design agency SO-IL. The founders of SO-IL, former Haarlemmer Florian Idenburg and his wife Jing Liu, aim to transform the museum into a ‘collection of rooms’, and will be working in collaboration with the Amsterdam agency MeesVisser to realise this plan. The museum wants to be approachable and accessible to (inter)national visitors and Haarlem’s residents, and shall do this by opening the doors of both buildings as widely as possible. De Vleeshal (in the Hal location) will be a free-to-enter art salon where visitors can enjoy the surrounding art while enjoying a cup of coffee. What’s more, thanks to its roof terrace with a mini-sculpture garden, Hal will also offer a unique view of Grote Markt and the beautiful historic city centre of Haarlem. Meanwhile, the inner garden of the Hof location will be a pleasant place to come and relax (free of charge) with art and greenery. In both locations, public spaces such as the museum café and the museum shop will be made more appealing to both the young and old.
In a nutshell: the renovated Frans Hals Museum is a meeting place where different art forms, ideas and visitors will soon cross paths, meet and overlap. We hope to meet you in one of our locations – be it Hof and/or Hal – soon.
to where introductions are a pleasure.