A review of the renovation and reopening, the new building and interior by Maurice Mentjens. Recognition by numerous international press coverage, including by Archello.

The Weert municipal museum reopened its doors on 3 May 2022, after extensive renovation, restoration and refurbishment. Under the name Museum W, the museum strikes a new substantive course with a renewed arrangement of the permanent collection and an exhibition programme with contemporary art and design. Museum W is located in the oldest town hall (16th century) of Weert, on the Markt. The national monument was partly provided with a spectacular facade that was given a golden skin by being coated with Tecu®Gold. The museum also received a totally revamped interior. The façade, new interior and furnishings were designed by Limburg designer Maurice Mentjens.

For this renovation, Museum W was the only museum in The Netherlands to receive the honourable mention ‘Archello’s Best Projects of 2022’. This label for exemplary projects in architecture and design is awarded every year by Archello, the platform for architecture and design. It honours architects and designers for their inspiring work.Archello reviewed 3,000 new construction projects from 2022, spread all over the world. Of these, six museums were recognised by Archello as ‘Best of 2022’. Besides Museum W, these are The Museum of Ethnography in Budapest, Museum of Modern Aluminum in Thailand, LIKNON in Samos, New Museum in New York and the Robot Science Museum in Seoul.

New exhibition: Adagio Violente – on a pilgrimage with Frans Franciscus

From 13 May to 29 October 2023, Museum W in Weert presents a solo exhibition with Frans’ oeuvre consisting out of paintings, ceramics and photography. With his work, the artist shows a broad view of people and society. Frans’ art is appealing, sharp, socially relevant and sometimes humorous. 

Frans is an artist with a highly developed historical consciousness. He derives his themes from art history, mythological and Biblical stories and current events. He fuses historical lore with contemporary situations in his paintings. In addition, his works are often inspired by classical European painting, for instance by masterpieces by Caravaggio, El Greco and Rubens. 

By transforming recognisable scenes from Western visual culture into contemporary works, Frans’ work is always contemporary. In his choice of subjects, too, Frans shows commitment and creates space for reflection and a broader view of human beings. Themes such as diversity, gender, climate, social deception and inequality are addressed. 

Adagio Violente at Museum W

Frans has been known since the 1990s for his recognisable and figurative paintings in large format. Later, ceramics were added. From 2012, he has also worked together with Rienus Gündel Franciscus. Under the name Franciscus & Franciscus, they gained fame with their highly stylised photographic portrait series. Here, they combine the digital medium of photography with classical portraiture. Besides older work, Adagio Violente also shows a lot of new work. This new work has not been exhibited in museums before. The exhibition takes you through the world of Frans, with stories that perfectly match the universal life themes in Museum W’s collection presentation.  

Joyce Overheul (November 2023 – April 2024): 

Museum W presents a solo exhibition with Joyce Overheul. Her work deals with inequality, sexism, power relations and the position of women. Textiles, beads and soft colours are recognisable features in her oeuvre. And that is a conscious choice: for a long time, crafts and textile work were not seen as a fully-fledged art form but as a women’s hobby. At Museum W, Overheul shows large wall hangings, banners with activist texts on them, and her work also enters into a relationship with some art objects from the museum’s collection. Joyce Overheul previously exhibited at Museum De Fundatie in Zwolle and has been named Talent of the Year 2023 by Stichting Kunstweek.

Marjan Laaper – Encounter (October 2023 – February 2024)Marjan Laaper specialises in large-scale video projections and video installations. The life cycles of man and nature play an important role in her video work. Everyday phenomena are presented in a poetic way. Starting points in Laapers’ work include general human experiences, nature and the perception of everyday life. In this, she seeks tensions between conflicting subjects, such as beauty and danger and the immaterial and the ephemeral. On the LED screens at Museum W, Laaper will show the video work Encounter. The work shows a huge projection of a Bengal eagle owl. The title of the work refers to an encounter with this owl, which the viewer examines and watches with probing eyes.