The most impressive and exciting addition is the ‘black box’ which houses part of Micropia, the world’s first museum of its kind. De Ledenlokalen building has been given back its original functions, that of museum, a place where people come together – the café-restaurant de Plantage – and spaces to be hired out to interested parties.
Television studios will be housed in the South Pavilion (Zuid Paviljoen). The location of Studio Artis follows on from a long tradition. Important programmes were broadcast to Dutch living rooms from here.
During the restoration, lots of original details of the building were found still intact. Research into archive material and building and paint records gave a picture of how 19th-century architecture was governed by a hierarchical aesthetic of form, choice of materials and workmanship. This led to the function of the various rooms being decisive in their design.
The Blue Star Room (Blauwe Sterrenzaal), on the top floor of the North Pavilion (Noord Paviljoen), was given the wallpaper, fireplace and colour paint it had in 1870. The four rooms underneath were treated to modern wallpaper, designed by artist Pavèl van Houten. Each space was given its own flavour and atmosphere dependent on its use. Nowadays, a tour of de Ledenlokalen shows how harmoniously past and present may make a vital new and coherent ensemble.