After three years of reconstruction work, the Museum of Fine Arts is now again open for visitors in Budapest. The museumʼs heating and air conditioning system was upgraded, much of the roof replaced, and new exhibition and public spaces created during the renovations, along with new underground storage facilities. The most visible part of the reconstruction of the building is the newly reopened grand Romanesque Hall, which had been closed to the public since 1945. Unfortunately, the great collection of plaster casts is no longer there; the Hall will be used mainly for events. A publication, as well as a special website was dedicated to the history and restoration of the Romanesque Hall.
The Museum of Fine Arts reopened to the public on October 31, 2018. At this time, about half of the permanent exhibitions are ready: the exhibition of Ancient Egypt, the exhibition of Classical Antiquity, the Old Sculpture Collection (European sculpture from 1350-1800) and part of the Old Master's Gallery (European Art 1250-1600). A new addition to the exhibitions at the Museum of Fine Arts is the Hungarian Baroque exhibition (Art in Hungary 1600-1800) - this is part of the controversial project of merging of the Museum of Fine Arts and the Hungarian National Gallery. In the future, the Museum of Fine Arts will only display Ancient and pre-1800 art, while a new museum will be built for western art after 1800 (see the website of the Liget Budapest project). Hungarian medieval art from the National Gallery will also be moved to the Museum of Fine Arts, where further parts of the permanent exhibitions are scheduled to open in 2019.
A temporary exhibition was also put on display, dedicated to the small bronze statue of a horse and rider, attributed to Leonardo da Vinci. The exhibition is inside a wonderful space for smaller exhibitions, the Michelangelo Hall, which was also fully restored.
Along with the reconstruction of the museum building, the logo and the website of the Museum were also upgraded. For more information on the permanent exhibitions as well as on the collections of the Museum of Fine Arts, head on over there. As an illustration for this post, I am including a photo of a new acquisition by the Museum, a late-fifteenth century Spanish statue of St. Michael, carved by Gil de Siloé. The statue is now on display in the galleries of European art.
|Gil de Siloé: St. Michael. Museum of Fine Arts, Budapest|