In parallel with the developments in the architecture dossier an internal team is working on the new permanent exhibition. This is taking place in collaboration with external experts and representatives of the African diaspora.
Putting together ideas for the exhibition in the new museum is no easy task. Our collections are enormous and the quantity and diversity of scientific knowledge is impressive too. The challenge is to provide visitors of diverse ages and backgrounds with an attractive and interesting tale that uses the museum’s expertise and collections to reflect its identity.
The new permanent exhibition concentrates on Central Africa, placing mankind at its very heart. The new museum want to be a museum about contemporary Africa with themes such as biodiversity, natural resources, humanity and society where both the past and the collections are approached from a contemporary point of view. Everything is placed in its context without losing sight of the beauty of the exhibits and the building they are housed in.
On the underground level from which the visitor enters the building, an introductory module recounts the museum’s past and present. The ground floor is divided up into four large thematic zones which are given interdisciplinary content.
Red : Arts, expressions and representations
Blue : Resources
Green: Landscapes and biodiversity
Scenographer Niek Kortenkaas, who was part of TV SBA, has drawn up the basis of the scenography for the permanent lay-out.
The unassuming nature of the scenography ensures that the original interior remains visible. The original exhibition cabinets are restored and reused. They are supplemented by new cabinets for the purposes of which a contemporary modular system has been designed. In the future this system will enable us to be extremely flexible.
Giving a contemporary vision to an Africa of the past and present and allowing it to take shape in a building that dates from the colonial period is a major challenge.