Gustavianum closes for renovation
Gustavianum, Uppsala University Museum, looks after many unique and fragile objects – Egyptian mummies, Roman and Greek collections, archaeological finds from the Viking period, works of art, the famous Augsburg Art Cabinet, scientific instruments from various eras – and much more. All these historic collections must be stored and displayed with care. It is to this end that Gustavianum will close from 29th September 2020 for renovation work. Renovation will, above all, improve the environmental conditions for exhibited objects, as well as increase the total area of exhibition space. The renovation work is being conducted by Sweden’s National Property Board, in close collaboration with Uppsala University. The work is estimated to be completed within three years of the start of renovation.
Gustavianum is itself a unique building of major historical and cultural significance that must be treated with great care. The building, including the Anatomical Theatre, will not be altered. The careful renovation will instead focus on improving the existing building’s ability to function as a museum, where the collections can be better preserved for the future. Most importantly, this involves changing the environmental conditions in the exhibition rooms. Modern technology will enable the regulation of air humidity and temperature, so that these are maintained at a level that is as stable as possible. As a result, the exhibited Museum objects will be less exposed to potentially damaging seasonal and weather-related stresses.
In addition to improving environmental conditions, the renovation will result in an enlarged exhibition space. By making better use of the building’s potential and layout, it will become possible to display more of the University’s fabulous treasures to future visitors. One of the aims of the renovation is thus to enable Gustavianum’s wonderful architecture and the richness of the University’s collections to complement and enhance each other. When the doors re-open, the vision is that visitors will experience a unique university museum of world class.
Even though the Gustavianum building will be closed to visitors during the renovations, the Museum’s other activities will continue as usual. The external storage facilities for artwork, coins and historic objects will be open for students and researchers as usual. In addition, these collections will be made accessible through special events for the general public during the renovation period. The Vikings Begin, a travelling exhibition produced by Gustavianum, is continuing its tour of the USA throughout the period of renovation.