Towards the new Rijksmuseum

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On 13 April 2013, the Rijksmuseum Amsterdam reopened after a renovation process that had lasted more than a decade. The building, which originally dates from 1885, was designed by architect P.J.H. Cuypers (1827-1921). In the space of over a century, the building underwent numerous major and minor renovations, prompted by lack of space, growing visitor numbers and changing ideas about museum design. The end result of all those renovations was a labyrinth that was no longer able to fulfill its role as a national museum for the public. The recent adaptation had a very ambitious aim which, translated to the building meant the most radical approach: modernization instead of preservation or improvement.