Ibsen's flat reopened as museum

The Oslo flat where Henrik Ibsen died 100 years ago reopened as a museum showing his life and work.

india Updated: May 29, 2006 18:03 IST

The Oslo flat where Henrik Ibsen died 100 years ago re-opened Tuesday as a museum showing the life and work of one of the world's most influential playwrights. The flat, at No. 1 Arbins Gate, where Ibsen spent the last 11 years of his life, has been furnished with Ibsen's possessions, including his books, as it was when he lived there. It was fully restored in 2005 and early 2006 for about 23 million Kroner (US$3.8 million,€2.9 million). Queen Sonja formally reopened it Tuesday as part of the Ibsen Museum.

Ibsen wrote his two last plays John Gabriel Borkman and When We dead Awake in the sprawling 320-square-meter (3,440-sq. ft.) flat. It is also where he died at age 78 on May 23, 1906.

Although Ibsen was known as a rebel, and gained fame for his plays challenging the social conventions of his time, the apartment reflects the wealth he began to enjoy in his older years. Its furnishings are opulent, with the finest silks, artworks and a strikingly beautiful woodstove.

Ibsen's 26 plays examine such themes as venereal disease, alcoholism, incest and insanity, all shocking and forbidden subjects in his era that remain topical today.

 
 Henrik Ibsen's restored flat

According to Bentein Baardson, a theater director and head of the Ibsen 2006 celebrations, Ibsen's plays are the world's most performed after Shakespeare's.

First Published: May 24, 2006 16:45 IST