The European Museum of the Year Award 2015 has been awarded to The Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam, which received the EMYA trophy The Egg, by Henry Moore.
Announced on Saturday, 16 May, at a special ceremony, the awards were opened by EMF Chair Goranka Horjan and Councillor Archie Graham, Deputy Leader of Glasgow City Council and Chair of Glasgow Life.
The world-famous museum was closed for almost a decade to to allow for a complete overhaul, which enabled the creation of new concourse spaces, much better visitor services and circulation. The stunning restoration of original wall-paintings, the elegant rehang of its world-famous paintings, the Museum’s new historic galleries which integrate all the collections, a new Asian Art pavilion and a new medieval gallery: all celebrate the range and depth of the Museum’s collections vividly.
A statement by the judges said: “The renewed Rijksmuseum offers impressive multilingual guidance to its visitors, witty and thought-provoking interventions in the galleries, and a state-of-the-art website for virtual visitors. Not immediately obvious to the visitor are the museum’s diverse educational and outreach programmes. The ambition to reach every child in the Netherlands by the age of 12 is notable, impressive and achievable. This is a great museum, at the height of its powers, providing a rich experience to the public, and a socially aware outreach programme for visitors of all ages.”
The Silletto Prize, which recognises excellence working with the local communities and involving volunteers, went to The Familistère at Guise, France.
The Kenneth Hudson Award, given in recognition of the most unusual and daring achievement that challenges common perceptions of the role of museums in society, was awarded to The International Red Cross and Red Crescent Museum, Geneva, Switzerland.
Special Commendations 2015
Mary Rose Museum, Portsmouth,
The Finnish Nature Centre Haltia, Haltia, Finland (Special Commendation for Sustainability)
Red Star Line Museum, Antwerp, Belgium
MUSE: Museo delle Scienze (Science Museum), Trento, Italy
Vorarlberg Museum, Vorarlberg, Austria