Museum De Lakenhal  

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Museum De Lakenhal is a city museum of fine arts in Leiden, the Netherlands. The museum hosts a collection of altarpieces and religious artifacts from before the Protestant Revolution that were formally ceded to the state in 1572, but it is mainly of interest for its collection of fijnschilder paintings from the Dutch Golden Age.

History of the building

This museum is located in a building that was originally a cloth hall (lakenhal) – a guild hall for cloth merchants and beer brewers in central Leiden. The museum was founded in 1874 as a stedelijk museum (municipal museum) and like other municipal museums in the Netherlands, after opening its doors it became a repository for municipal art collections. Where possible, artifacts from Leiden are on display. A series of stained glass windows by Willem Thibaut commissioned for the Leiden city hall, are now installed in the stairwells, for example. The museum also includes a reconstructed statie or Catholic mission station from after the Reformation. Because the Catholic religion was banned, there was no official church and all of the Catholic places of worship in the young Dutch Republic were called mission stations. These were semi-hidden churches that were tolerated and taxed by the state.


On permanent display are also the old inspection room or Staalmeesterskamer where cloth was inspected and the meeting hall where disputes were decided. Four large paintings depicting the cloth industry by Isaac van Swanenburg hang in the same spots on the walls as designed. Similarly, a very grand over-the-mantel piece by Carel de Moor shows the inspectors in a massive wooden frame decorated with their family shields, flanked by a series of three historical allegories of the city of Leiden by Abraham Lambertsz van den Tempel.

The museum has a café and often hosts visiting art exhibitions.

Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Museum De Lakenhal" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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