The renovation and expansion of a historic museum

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Skagen Museum in Denmark’s most northern town, Skagen, is currently undergoing a major revamp.

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Designed and planned by Danish architectural practice Friis & Moltke Architects, the project includes the restoration of the old museum building, dating from 1928, and designing and building a new extension that will provide extra room for both exhibition areas and storage.

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Wear and tear and a lack of space are the main reasons behind the renovation and expansion of the museum, which is actually the fifth most visited museum in Denmark.

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The extension will be covered with black slates, which, according to the architects, is not a completely unknown material in the historic Skagen.

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“We have focused on creating the best conditions for Skagen Museum in order to make it possible for the museum to continue to create exhibitions at an international level now and in the future. The new extension is a modern building with a contemporary idiom, which in terms of dimensions respectfully fits in with the historic surroundings and will support and strengthen the identity of the museum”, says Mikkel Wienberg, partner and creative director at Friis & Moltke Architects.

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Before the expansion of the exhibition areas, the museum had 509 square metres of exhibition space, which is increased to 917 square metres due to the new extensions.

Published
27.11.2015

Skagen Museum in Denmark’s most northern town, Skagen, is currently undergoing a major revamp. Designed and planned by Danish architectural practice Friis & Moltke Architects, the project includes the restoration of the old museum building, dating from 1928, and designing and building a new extension that will provide extra room for both exhibition areas and storage. In addition, work on the historic Skagen Museum will also extends the original Plesner building in line with the original drawings designed by the late architect Ulrik Plesner.

Wear and tear and a lack of space are the main reasons behind the renovation and expansion of the museum, which is actually the fifth most visited museum in Denmark. The physical conditions of the Museum simply made it critical to start the project soon to accommodate visitor numbers. The goal of Skagen Museum was to make a big, but not too big extension, and so the new extension comprises 300 square metres of exhibition space.

The extension will be covered with black slates, which, according to the architects, is not a completely unknown material in the historic Skagen. At the same time, the dark colour refers to the so-called “black period” in the building history of the town. Furthermore, slate is a natural, environmentally friendly material that corresponds nicely with the surrounding nature in the area.

Before the expansion of the exhibition areas, the museum had 509 square metres of exhibition space, which is increased to 917 square metres due to the new extensions. The extra space is going to be used to offer better conditions for the permanent collection, which currently only has space for a very limited display. In the future, Skagen Museum will be able to display 50% of its permanent collection. Other significant steps in making a better museum include better, more dynamic lighting as well as gaining the opportunity to incorporate moveable walls and spaces for special exhibitions, while improving accessibility also has been a key element in the shape and design of the project.

“We have focused on creating the best conditions for Skagen Museum in order to make it possible for the museum to continue to create exhibitions at an international level now and in the future. The new extension is a modern building with a contemporary idiom, which in terms of dimensions respectfully fits in with the historic surroundings and will support and strengthen the identity of the museum”, says Mikkel Wienberg, partner and creative director at Friis & Moltke Architects.

The complete redesign and renovation of Skagen Museum will be finished in February 2016.

“We look forward to showing the people and guests of Skagen the finished project that will create the framework for a new national main museum and that will add significant new value to the visitor experience of the art”, says Mikkel Wienberg.

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