Alain van der Horst (Head of Press at the Van Gogh Museum) has been appointed as the new Chair of the Van Gogh Europe Foundation. In this ancillary position, he succeeds Milou Halbesma, former Director of Public Affairs at the Van Gogh Museum.

Van Gogh Europe connects the places where Vincent van Gogh lived or worked with museums that are home to or exhibit his work. A total of 4 countries, 15 cities, 10 heritage locations and 7 museums are currently in the network. With Van der Horst at the helm, Van Gogh Europe will focus on strengthening its international positioning, on educational projects and on profiling and improving access to the locations, collections and heritage associated with Vincent van Gogh in Europe. The new Chair takes up his position in a period in which the coronavirus crisis is presenting undeniable challenges, and in which cross-border solidarity is more important than ever.

Making European cultural heritage accessible for future generations

Alain van der Horst succeeds Milou Halbesma, who recently departed the Van Gogh Museum to become Director of the VandenEnde Foundation. Van der Horst became Head of Press at the Van Gogh Museum in November 2017. He previously held a similar position at Greenpeace, was Editor-in-Chief at De Nieuwe Pers and Deputy Editor at Dutch newspaper De Pers.

In his new role as Chair, Van der Horst will be working closely with Project Manager Sarah Dekker (Van Gogh Museum) and the other partners in the network to introduce current and new generations to Vincent van Gogh and to inspire them with his life and work.

Van der Horst: ‘It is an honour and a pleasure to have the opportunity to become Chair of this collective, and to personally contribute to highlighting and promoting European cultural heritage’.

Van Gogh Europe

Since its foundation in 2012, Van Gogh Europe launched the successful PITCH project (2015, with support from the European Commission) and the Route Van Gogh Europe (2017). The network has continued to expand over the years, welcoming new members such as the Van Gogh House London and the Drents Museum Assen (2018). The successful social media campaign #FollowVanGogh reached 365,000 people and achieved more than 1,300,000 views (since 2017).

Alongside Van der Horst, the Board of Van Gogh Europe consists of: Anne-Sophie Foron (Head of the Visitors Department & Communications, Fondation Vincent van Gogh Arles), Natacha Vandenberghe (Director of the Office du Tourisme de la Ville Mons), Philippe Goninet (Director of the Office du Tourisme de la Ville Saint Rémy de Provence), Lies Boelrijk (Head of Marketing & Business Development at the Kröller-Müller Museum) and Livia Wang (Creative Director of the Van Gogh House London).

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