Horst Janssen Museum reopens

Exhibition accessible via new entrance

After six months of closure, the Horst Janssen Museum has reopened from Tuesday, 4 April. "I am pleased that the museum can finally welcome guests again in time for Easter - albeit on a smaller scale at first," says Lord Mayor Jürgen Krogmann. For now, only the first level with the permanent exhibition "Horst Janssen - Newly Discovered" is open. "Visitors can discover two new features here: they can enter the Horst Janssen Museum via a newly created side entrance in the street Am Stadtmuseum until the new building of the neighbouring Stadtmuseum is completed. And they can look forward to a new hanging of original works by Janssen in the permanent exhibition," says Krogmann. Museum director Dr Jutta Moster-Hoos explains: "Our research assistant Antje Tietken has curated this new hanging under the title 'Alles Körper!"

New hanging "Alles Körper!"

Focusing on Janssen's exploration of anatomies and physiognomies, humans and animals are the focus of the show "Alles Körper!". "Anatomies run through Janssen's work from the 1950s to the 1990s," knows curator Antje Tietken. "In drawings, woodcuts, lithographs and early etchings, Janssen's treatment of the subject of the body is exceedingly varied: living or dead, they are drawn inventories, representations of reality, for example when Janssen draws his sleeping cat 'Lydia'."  In his "copies", the drawings after his artistic models, it is portraits after historical paintings and drawings that enable a fascinating comparison between model and copy. Possibly chilling, Janssen's view of the transient world appears - for Janssen, who is fascinated by everything "withered", decay and death are the motifs here with regard to the anatomies. Janssen also deals with his own face in an unembellished way: in the cycle "19 May 1990", he deals with the fall from his balcony in which he burnt his eyes and almost went blind.

Side entrance leads temporarily into the museum

But it is not only the hanging of the permanent exhibition that is new, but also the direction in which visitors walk. They now enter the exhibition from the other side, because the previous foyer and the main entrance of the museum have been closed and are awaiting demolition. Until the new building of the City Museum with the new common entrance is ready, a side entrance has been set up for the Horst Janssen Museum as a transitional measure. This is located at the north-western end of the museum on the street Am Stadtmuseum. A door was inserted into the glass transition from the Horst Janssen Museum to Ballin's Villa and a staircase construction was installed. As the footpath and cycle path in front of the museum is still closed from the Lappan, the new entrance can only be reached directly coming from the Pferdemarkt or by taking a short diversions through Raiffeisenstraße coming from the Lappan or the railway station.

Museum despite building site

"Our aim is to keep the Horst Janssen Museum open with the help of the new entrance despite the adjacent building work on the new City Museum. But there will be certain restrictions due to the construction activity, for example, the regular staircase will no longer be available to us," explains museum director Moster-Hoos. "It's a museum business with a construction site, and we're trying to create alternatives for what's gone due to construction." Visitors can use the internal staircase between the exhibition levels and a cloakroom and seating have been set up in the alternative entrance area.

Due to fire safety regulations, there will be a 20-person limit per exhibition level. "After years of Corona restrictions, we have all become specialists in flexibility after all, and so we are now concentrating on what is possible: a visit to our exhibitions despite the building site!" says museum director Jutta Moster-Hoos. Incidentally, admission to the Horst Janssen Museum will remain free in 2023 and 2024. And on International Museum Day on Sunday, 21 May, the second level of the museum will also be open again. A special exhibition showing Horst Janssen's photographic work will then be on display.