The Slovak National Gallery (SNG) will close in Bratislava for the summer but will open new exhibitions in other parts of the country as an extensive refurbishment of its premises moves into its final phase.
The Esterházy Palace, the last gallery building still open to the public in the capital, is to shut its doors for the summer as the gallery carries out final work on a massive refit.
But SNG officials have said art lovers can continue to enjoy works at its branches in other parts of Slovakia, with plans to open a number of new or renewed exhibitions in late May and June.
Along with the shutting of all its exhibition premises at the palace, the Ex Libris bookshop and the Berlinka café will be closed from June 4 until September 2.
The SNG refurbishment – which began in 2016 - is expected to be finished late this year, and the gallery has pledged to make its refitted premises accessible to the public as soon as all final building approvals are issued, even if they do not immediately house exhibitions.
- started in 2016
- total cost of the refurbishment of the SNG premises in Bratislava, which includes the reconstruction of the Water Barracks, extension of SNG building, construction of a new depository and public spaces, among others, is expected to exceed €70 million
- completion of work expected in 2022
“We would like to present the refurbishment [of the gallery] to the public, and show the buildings and the operation of the gallery through tours, lectures, attractive programmes and other creative and educational activities,” Alexandra Kusá, general director of the SNG, said earlier this year.
Gallery officials’ tentative plan is to be able to welcome visitors at a special exhibition in December, which will serve as a pilot project before the official re-opening of the gallery.
Meanwhile, until June 3, the Esterházy Palace will host the “You Can’t Buy a Butterfly” exhibition of works by Slovak contemporary artists, “7x7. Seven Liberal Thoughts on the Arts” which deals with the flourishing of online culture during the Covid-19 pandemic, as well other exhibitions.
Infusion of art
The final event before the closing of the Esterházy palace, is ‘Art Infusion’, a special programme exclusively for medical workers and their families, which will take place over the weekend of June 4-5. Medical workers will have to register online in advance to attend.