Budaörs country house museum, the country house museum of the year
BUDAÖRS COUNTRY HOUSE MUSEUM, THE COUNTRY HOUSE MUSEUM OF THE YEAR
- Bleyer Jakab Local History Collection was awarded the professional recognition by the Association of Hungarian Country House Museums -
The main goal of the Ethnic German Museum was to preserve the traditional Swabian culture of Budaörs, but over the course of time, scientific research, the organisation of exhibitions and events, the safeguarding and transfer of traditions also became a priority. As the scope of its activities expanded, the Bleyer Jakab Local History Collection also became an information centre for German country house museums in Hungary.
In Budaörs, the building at 47/1 Budapesti út was built in the last third of the 19th century. The traditional three-division house (room – kitchen – room) was later supplemented with an L-shaped room with a separate entrance, and the house also had a pantry, press house and cellar.
The building, which suffered severe damage during World War II, was inhabited by the Wéber family until the early 1980s. The house, a declared a monument was purchased by the council of Budaörs. In August 1987, right at the time of the German President Johannes Rau's visit to Budaörs, the collection received a museum license and moved into the building. The rich material collected in previous years was then placed in five rooms.
By 2016, the Heimatmuseum was able to create the financial background with which a complete renovation became possible, and which also provided an opportunity to renew and expand the exhibitions. During the renovation works, the attached press house was reconnected to the building. By expanding the number of exhibition spaces like this, a new concept could be created, which resulted in a new kind of exhibitions. In addition, the Swabian wine cellar under the country house museum was renewed, which had struggled with serious water damage until then. When planning the new spaces, it was also important to consider that they should also accommodate museum educational sessions, so interactive, colourful exhibitions had to be created suitable for all ages.
Following renovation work, the country house museum reopened its doors in a ceremonial setting on 12 May 2018. One of the main goals during the renovation was to expand the number of their exhibition spaces; the new permanent exhibition already occupies four rooms, and a new temporary exhibition room has also been created. The kitchen and the ‘best’ room give an insight into the housing culture of the Swabian population of Budaörs, while the so-called ‘Budaörs Room’ houses the memories of the settling down of the locals, the presentation of the documents of their lives, and it also functions as a memorial room of their forced relocation after World War II.
The reception room of the country house museum was placed in the former pantry, where the stripes running around the walls show mainly postcards in a thematic arrangement of Budaörs made in the first half of the 20th century. You can also buy country house museum publications and other souvenirs here.
The former living room of the house provides space for temporary exhibitions that are renewed annually on average. The first 30 years of the museum are currently on display in this exhibition space.
In the back room of the building, which is a separate room opening from the reception room, a temporary exhibition of personal memories is on show related to the 30th anniversary, as well as a Passion-themed enamel image exhibition. Later in the future, a study collection will be here, which will allow the presentation of previously unexhibited objects hiding in the storage unit.
The most important task of the museum is to safeguard and nurture the cultural values of Budaörs – whether they are exhibited objects, old works of art preserved in warehouses or traditions.
The Heimatmuseum plays a crucial role in the cultural and community life of Budaörs: every year it organises traditional programmes related to the exhibitions (Summer Camps for children, Tradition safeguarding, Book Shows), family programmes (Toy Hut, Museum Flea Market, Easter and Advent Craft Week, Puppet Theatre in both German and Hungarian languages) as well as open university courses and scientific conferences.
The programmes of the museum / country house museum are regularly visited by groups of ethnic German kindergartens, primary schools and secondary schools in and around Budaörs, as well as groups from different parts of the country - organised by ethnic German local governments - but also by many foreign (German, Austrian) groups. The museum is also visited by numerous researchers, university groups, and individual visitors from Germany. A tradition-safeguarding specialty group is also run for primary school students in Budaörs, and within the framework of local history classes – on the basis of a pre-arranged topic and time – knowledge to primary school and grammar school groups is transferred with the help of playful tasks. In the traditional summer and autumn, multi-day or full-week German-language camps, which are mostly attended by primary school students from Budaörs, playful education takes place in the morning with the aid of German teachers, and in the afternoon invited guests speakers give lectures and demonstrations, which along with excursions help knowledge transfer in a child-friendly way.
The country house museum continuously participates in Hungarian and German tenders independently or with its governing body, the Ethnic German Local Government of Budaörs and / or the Local Government of Budaörs. 90% of their annual budget is provided by the Local Government of Budaörs with the approval of the Ethnic German Local Government of Budaörs. A modest annual support is also provided by the National Ethnic Local Government of German nationals in Hungary, but they also regularly participate in ethnic tenders called for both in Germany and Hungary. The financial background of the extensive renovation completed in 2018, was provided by the Budaörs Local Government and the governing body of the museum the Budaörs Ethnic German Local Government, as well as EMMI grants (HUF 60 million, then further HUF 10 million in 2018), the Hermann-Niermann Stiftung (a German fund) and the building materials won in the Castle Building tender. The museum has also taken part in the tenders of the Kubinyi Ágoston Programme several times, and the received grants were used for printing costs, purchase of objects, restoration and disinfection of objects, as well as printing and graphic costs of the wall panels and other installations included in the exhibition. In 2017, with the help of a tender of the German Interior Ministry, a Kinder museum was established in the courtyard, and a small herb garden created earlier.
Congratulations to the winner, we wish them much success in their work in the future!