Museum previews: what to look forward to in 2022

In 2022, we can look forward to the opening of the Grand Egyptian Museum in Cairo, a new Anglo-Saxon visitor at Ad Gefrin in Northumberland, and Norway's new National Museum of Art, Architecture and Design.

Egyptian Extravaganza

The year ahead will be a busy one for Egyptology, as the anniversaries of the decipherment of the Rosetta Stone (1822) and the discovery of the tomb of Tutankhamun (1922) will be celebrated with exhibitions
in a number of museums.

One major event in Egyptian archaeology is the delayed opening of the Grand Egyptian Museum in Cairo, which will offer visitors the chance to see all of the objects from Tutankhamun’s tomb. The king’s second shrine has been installed recently, and other objects, including King Khufu’s 4,600-year-old solar boat, have been making their way into the new museum. It is expected to open later in 2022, but a date has not yet been announced.

Royal attraction

IMAGE: © Richard Elphick.

In the 7th century AD, Ad Gefrin (Yeavering) in northern England was home to the kings and queens of the Anglo-Saxon Kingdom of Northumbria. Figures including Aethelfrith, Edwin, Aethelburga, and St Oswald resided at the summer palace, which saw some of the first conversions to Christianity in northern England, as well as trade and cultural exchanges with people across Europe and as far as North Africa.

The site was discovered in the 1950s andis now pasture, but a new visitor centre nearby (shown above) plans to recreate its Great Hall. Lead curator Chris Ferguson said, ‘This will be the first experience in the UK to present the story of an Anglo-Saxon Great Hall, and particularly to celebrate the Golden Age of Northumbria.’

Ad Gefrin is due to open in autumn 2022.

A new National Museum

On 11 June 2022, Norway’s new National Museum of Art, Architecture and Design is scheduled to open its doors. The Oslo museum was established in the early 2000s when four museums merged, bringing together a large collection of objects from different fields of art and design, including Roman statuettes, the spectacular late 12th-century Baldishol tapestry with its colourful depictions of the months April and May, porcelain from imperial China, and perhaps the most famous Norwegian artwork, Edvard Munch’s The Scream.

The new structure, designed by architects Kleihues + Schuwerk, offers space for twice as many objects as the old building. It will be crowned by the Light Hall, a large temporary exhibition space. First on the schedule is I Call It Art, exploring Norway’s contemporary art.