Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen’s collection is world famous. It has been growing for 165 years and currently contains some 145,000 objects. Our museum has grown from the human desire to collect and share one’s collection with others, we want to share our art with as many people as possible.
As rich as our collection has grown, currently only 8% can be shown in the monumental museum building. The greater part of our wondrous objects is stored away across multiple art depots that are closed off to the public and have proven prone to flooding, an increasingly unsafe and unsustainable environment. The urgent responsibility to safeguard the collection gives us the unique opportunity to create something entirely novel, in true Rotterdam spirit.
In March 2017 we broke new ground by commencing work on a public art depot that will make our entire collection accessible to the public and safe for future generations. In 2020, Depot Boijmans Van Beuningen will open right next to the museum. The building will reach as high as the museum’s beacon and give all citizens and visitors of Rotterdam free access to a panorama of the city and its harbor from its rooftop garden and restaurant.
The arrival of Depot Boijmans Van Beuningen will increase the pulling power of the Museumpark as an international art podium. The 40 metre high building , designed by architects MVRDV, has the potential to become a new icon for Rotterdam and is expected to attract 100,000 visitors per year.
Depot Boijmans Van Beuningen is a splendid example of a successful public-private partnership. We raised enough money for the construction of the building, thanks to generous leadership support foremost by the Rotterdam social investment fund Stichting De Verre Bergen. Now we’re looking ahead to completing our $10 million private fundraising goal, needed to create a transformative public experience. We have great plans to make the public experience exceptional, including a 36 metre high atrium gallery filled with works of art, a roof top terrace full of trees, and state-of the-art restoration studios.
Will you join us? With your support, Depot Boijmans Van Beuningen will be much more than an iconic building that stores wonderful collections. Much more. We invite you to join us in co-creating the future!
Would you like to know more about supporting Depot Boijmans Van Beuningen? Contact:
What will a future visit to the depot be like if all our fantastic plans are realized?
As soon as they enter, visitors get an impression of the scale of the collection and the hustle and bustle in the depot. The 36 metre high central atrium gallery will prominently display revolving sets of art, viewable from the central staircase and landings.
A good way for visitors to become acquainted with Depot Boijmans Van Beuningen when they visit it for the first time is to take the express lift, which is free of charge, to the rooftop garden which overlooks the city.
Visitors who want to discover more can buy a ticket that gives them a look inside a larger part of the building. Some forty-five percent of the building is directly accessible to members of the public. During their wanderings, visitors go via the atrium into educational zones, exhibition areas, the cinema and film cabins, and the expertise centre where art works are restored. Visitors will be allowed to see silverware being polished, art works being restored from beginning to end, and masterpieces being packed for transportation to exhibitions abroad. Collectors and art lovers can bring their treasures for specialized advice, services or storage.
The spectacular views of Rotterdam from the rooftop garden, decked with trees and artworks from Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen’s collection, are free and available for everyone.
Among the trees on the roof you find Restaurant Dépot with a terrace where visitors can enjoy a wonderful view of the city. On the top floor visitors can also visit the freely accessible exhibition area with displays that show more about the collection’s roots, the architecture of the depot, and the activities that take place in the depot, showing the love and detail that goes into working with an art collection.
Never before has a museum allowed people to go backstage, to peek behind the curtain and experience the care and detail and love that goes into the preservation of each piece for future generations.
Visitors can find out more by going on a guided tour through repositories, art handling rooms and building services areas. Accompanied by a guide and a security guard, visitors see no end of artworks, from large-scale installations to old master paintings, from modern photographs and robust sculptures to the most delicate porcelain.
The building’s floor area is 15,000 m2, it has six floors and is 39.5 metres high. Its footprint is 40 metres in diameter, which cantilevers out to a diameter of 60 metres. The ground floor consists of a welcoming entrance area with a museum shop and coffee corner. On this floor there are also areas for art handling: packaging, atmosphere conditioning, quarantine, loading and unloading.
The upper storeys contain all repositories, exhibition spaces, the expertise centre and a cinema, located around the central atrium. The atrium gallery, with glass roof, is filled with works from Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen’s collection. The storeys are connected by suspended staircases, which have something of the feel of the breathtaking sketches by the eighteenth-century Italian architect Giovanni Battista Piranesi.
Sustainability & Innovation
The design of Depot Boijmans Van Beuningen by architects MVRDV, is a paragon of sustainability. With innovative sustainable technologies and materials, energy efficiency making use of heat and cold storage, grey water storage and trees on the roof, the CO2-neutral building complies with the criteria for the BREEAM rating of excellent.
Storing private and corporate collections
In addition to providing storage for the collection of Museum Boijmans van Beuningen, the building will also offer seven compartments for private and corporate collections. A select few collectors will have the opportunity to have their collection managed within the context of Depot Boijmans Van Beuningen. Collectors may remain anonymous and the spaces are accessible via a private entrance. Upon request we can provide collectors and companies with costumized offers of depots with or without exhibition spaces. It will also be possible to store one or more artworks in a shared compartment.
To learn more about investing in Depot Boijmans Van Beuningen, or the possibilities for renting depot space, contact: