Information about the museum
Since 1963, the Pottery Museum Raeren is situated in the historical Raeren castle which was built in the 14th century. Already in the first years after its opening, it caused a sensation in the national and international professional world, being the first museum to present a complete overview of the history of Raeren stoneware. Up to the present day the Pottery Museum Raeren is the only institution worldwide that provide such an overview.
During the early 80s, the exhibition was enlarged and enriched by the "collection Rehker". This collection includes Roman pottery as well as historical stoneware from other Rhenish production centers (Siegburg, Cologne/Frechen, Westerwald and Langerwehe) and East Germany.
Since 1992, the museum is under professional management and has since then expanded its national and international contacts. It participates in many international cooperation projects and is part of several networks. In 1995, the museum also started to collect contemporary ceramics.
After being closed for 20 months, the museum was reopened in March 2002, showing a completely new and modern presentation of its permanent exhibition. Information on different levels, multimedia elements, tasteful presentations and showcases, audiostations and books allow each visitor to learn in-depth everything they want to know about Raeren stoneware.
The collection of the Pottery Museum Raeren consists largely of archaeological finds made in Raeren since the 1950s. It is the only institution that presents simple stoneware tableware in all its variants since the end of the 14th century. What is important for archaeologists is the fact that a large part of the collection comes from the historical production context rather than from the consumer environment.
High-quality decorated Renaissance vessels, an overview of most of the known reliefs as well as a number of valuable permanent loans from the Hetjens-Museum Düsseldorf and the Royal Museums of Art and History in Brussels complete this overview of the whole history of the Raeren stoneware up to his end in the 19th century.
Historicism products dating from the 19th century, especially made by Hubert Schiffer, and replicas dating from the 20th century complement the exhibition, as does the "collection Rehker" providing an overview of the rest of the Rhenish stoneware.
The museum is also constantly expanding its collection of contemporary ceramics through the annual award of the Euregio Ceramic Prize.
Further offers include a wide range of educational activities for children, young people and adults, guided tours on various themes, workshops in the adjoining pottery studio, literature about Raeren ceramics and touristic features of the region as well as an extensive archive and a well-stocked reference library.
Since May 2007 the Raeren stoneware and the Pottery Museum Raeren figure on the list of honor of the EUROPEAN CULTURAL HERITAGE.