Beit Bialik to reopen after three years

After three years of renovations, the Bialik Museum in central Tel Aviv will finally reopen to the public in time for the city's 100th birthday celebrations this year, reports Beit Bialik, designed by architect Yosef Minor and built in 1924-5 for the national poet and his wife, has now been revamped from the foundations up, with colors, decorations and furnishings faithfully restored to their original styles. According to the report, the house was once considered one of the most beautiful and most important buildings in Tel Aviv, not only because it was the home of Chaim Nachman Bialik and his wife Manya, but also because of its pioneering architectural design that combined European and Oriental decorative elements in a grand structure. Bialik, born in 1873 in the Ukraine, was already a celebrated poet and publisher when he moved to Tel Aviv in 1924, and once his house was completed he regularly hosted literary and cultural meetings there. After his sudden death in 1934 in Vienna in the wake of a medical operation, the house was turned into a museum, library and archive, but over the years it and its contents were neglected and left to deteriorate. In 1984, the house was closed to the public and partly renovated, reopening only in 1991. Three years ago, the house was closed once again for the resumption of renovation work. The report said the house now has its original features restored, including the original colors and decorations on the walls, which have been exposed and retouched, and furniture and other items which have been repaired. The poet's former bedroom has been turned into a display room, and his personal archive has been replicated. To celebrate Bialik's birthday on January 9, the house will be open to the public free of charge on Thursday, January 8, from 12 noon to 8 p.m., and on Friday and Saturday, January 9 and 10, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.