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Apollo Awards 2014

Shortlist: Museum Opening of the Year

18 November 2014

We’re pleased to announce the Apollo Awards 2014 shortlist for the Museum Opening of the Year, which recognises some of the most important new museum or renovation projects to be completed between October 2013 and September 2014. The winner will be announced in the December issue of Apollo. Find out more about the Apollo Awards.

© Aga Khan Museum

Aga Khan Museum, Toronto

Highlights from the Aga Khan Museum’s collection have been touring the world for several years. Now for the first time, more than 1,000 artefacts spanning as many years of Islamic history and three continents have a permanent home designed by the Pritzker Prize-winning architect Fumihiko Maki. The collection includes masterpieces of ceramics and painting acquired by the Aga Khan’s uncle the late Prince Sadruddin Aga Khan.

Clark Art Institute

© Jeff Goldberg

The Clark Art Institute, Massachusetts

The Sterling and Francine Clark Institute unveiled its new extension and refurbished galleries on 4 July. Its existing research centre and galleries have been rethought by Annabelle Seldorf, who worked with the curators to redisplay the museum’s collection of Old Master and Impressionist paintings, works on paper, and decorative arts. A striking new building designed by Tadao Ando includes three additional exhibition spaces, and helps to reorientate and unite the wider campus. More on the Clark Art Institute…

Image courtesy Imperial War Museums

Imperial War Museum, London

The Imperial War Museum revealed its £40-million revamp in time for the centenary commemorations of the First World War. The new atrium, designed by Norman Foster, is dominated by objects including a Harrier jet, Spitfire plane and a V2 rocket. The museum is now easier to navigate, and its First World War Galleries have been completely rethought; the reopening also coincided with the launch of an acclaimed exhibition of British art of the First World War. More on the Imperial War Museum…

© 2014 Musée du Louvre, dist. RMN-GP/ Olivier Ouadah

18th-Century Decorative Arts Galleries, Musee du Louvre, Paris

Thirty-three new rooms devoted to 18th-century decorative arts opened in June, to display more than 2,200 objects from the reign of Louis XIV to the French Revolution – one of the greatest public collections of its kind in the world. The galleries reinvigorate the idea of the period room, while incorporating vitrines and cases, with highlights including the Piranesi room and its collection of Grand Tour antiquities.

Photographer: Ivo Hoekstra

Mauritshuis, The Hague

The Mauritshuis’s collection of Dutch and Flemish 17th-century paintings can now be seen again after the museum’s two-year closure. Many of its masterpieces of Dutch Golden Age painting have been cleaned and the building itself, one of the best examples of Dutch classical architecture, has managed to double its space (acquiring an underground visitor centre and a new wing next door) without compromising its original charm. More on the Mauritshuis…

Who do you think should win the Museum Opening of the Year? Let us know in the comments…