What’s the story behind the beautiful monumental façade of Stedelijk Museum Breda? And who are those two men above the entrance gate? Discover more about the history of the building, the rooms and the accessibility of the museum here.
Breda’s oldest hotel
Breda is a city full of diversity: students, commuters and tourists have been coming and going for centuries. And that is reflected in the building that Stedelijk Museum Breda is housed in: this is the oldest hotel (gasthuis or guest house) in Breda. Passers-by, pilgrims and homeless people historically found a place to eat and sleep here.
What these guests contributed in their interactions with the city can be seen in the museum. It still works like this today: the people in Breda still contribute to the museum, via the NEXT project. Thus we continue a time-honoured tradition.
Meet Thijs and Geert from the 17th century
When you now stand before the building, you come face to face with two former residents of the building: Thijs and Geert. Part of the hotel had been converted into an ‘old men’s house’ (Oudemannenhuis) in later years; an early form of retirement home for poor people. Thijs and Geert were the most famous old men of Breda when the new façade was added to the former hotel (1643), and that is why they were immortalized by the artist.
In 1954 the last residents of the Oudemannenhuis had left. And the building was transformed into cultural centre De Beyerd, the Graphic Design Museum, MOTI and eventually Stedelijk Museum Breda. But Thijs and Geert are still there. When you step into the museum, you are stepping in their footsteps.
Behind the gate: accessible for everyone
Everyone is welcome at Stedelijk Museum Breda. Whether you visit for a cup of coffee or for the latest exhibition. And that hospitality also means that the museum is wheelchair-friendly: we have a lift and wheelchairs can also be borrowed. Look inside: an overview of the museum rooms