The history of the MoMu building
Inspiration carved in stone: the MoMu building through the years
MoMu now and a sneak preview
The architecture of the museum today dates back to early 2000s when famous Ghent architect, Marie-José Van Hee, gave the building a new dynamic, and also a new public area for the city, after a radical renovation.
This infrastructure is now being optimized, with great respect for the original signature of the predecessors, by B-Architects. Good to know: the spaciousness of the infamous MoMu entrance hall, the atrium and its massive sculptural wooden staircase will be preserved. However, 800m² of extra public viewing space will be added and includes a large multi-adaptable space and an exhibition space for the permanent collection that will focus on Belgian fashion. As a result, 3 different fashion stories can be exhibited at the same time in a total space of 2,000 m².
Creativity and inspiration live in every corner of the building: the renowned Fashion Department of the Antwerp Royal Academy of Fine Arts and the non-profit organization Flanders DC will also move to a temporary location until the end of the renovation. Another eye-catcher in the building, bookshop Copyright, will remain unchanged. The successful exhibition ‘Olivier Theyskens – She walks in beauty’ was also the last show in the building before it closed its doors.
On 21 September, one year after the Antwerp Fashion Year 2001, the then new MoMu opened. A large festival and gala pulled in an international crowd, and on MoMu's terrace there was a striking and regal retrospective show with work by Patrick Van Ommeslaeghe, a former student of the Academy. The Antwerp Fashion Department had already moved into the new building during the summer holidays so it could start the 2002-2003 academic year in brand new surroundings.
2001 – May 2001
On the morning of 17 May 2001, Antwerp awoke to the sight of a fluorescent yellow façade from ModeNatie. This was the highlight of the fashion event ‘MODE 2001 LANDED GELAND’, organised under the watchful creative eye of Belgian fashion icon Walter Van Beirendonck. In the following four months, coloured fields and flowerbeds appeared across the whole city to promote the event. B-architecten were tasked with perfectly integrating these bright spots into the urban landscape. In December, Copyright Bookshop became the first to open its doors in the new building.