Restoring an icon

A crime against tiles, architecture, and all things beautiful is being righted by the masters at Koninklijke Tichelaar. In 1902 Jan Jacob Luden commissioned a spectacular, sprawling hunting lodge in brilliant white, decorated with around 35,000 colourful tiles.

These tiles, as well as a number of the architectural features, formed elements typical of the Jugendstil movement – Germany’s take on Art Nouveau. Devastatingly, various attempts at renovating the building in the 1970s led to the tiles being covered with glue, plaster, paint, and all manner of materials, completely obscuring them from view and creating a “vapor-sealed layer that caused major constructional problems.”

Now, massive efforts to repair Jachtslot Mookerheide are underway, fixing and refinishing key parts of the building, including each and every hidden tile. With a few original pieces to work from Koninklijke Tichelaar have been mixing glazes to match all seven of the tile colours – light blue, yellow, green, dark blue, purple, dark green, and brown.

The tiles that could be salvaged were to be used alongside the recreations, making it vital for Koninklijke Tichelaar to create exact copies. Testing glaze thickness, glaze pouring techniques, firing temperatures, they finally cracked it, crafting pieces that bring Jachtslot Mookerheide back to its former glory.

As each part of the facade is revealed, the building’s incredible beauty and unique decorations bring boundless joy to anyone lucky enough to see them.

Koninklijke Tichelaar
Jachtslot Mookerheide

A new post by Hanna Simpson, Diary of a Tile Addict, May 2023.

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