Two grand old organs in Delft’s famous Oude Kerk (Old Church) in the Netherlands have recently been restored to their former grandeur using special Sikkens paint supplied by Akzo Nobel.
Dating back to 1240, the church has a special place in Dutch history as it is the last resting place of some notable historic figures. For example, two Dutch admirals—Piet Hein and Maarten Tromp—are buried there, along with the famous painter Vermeer and Antoni van Leeuwenhoek, the renowned scientist and inventor of the microscope.
Well known for its crooked church tower, beautifully crafted pulpit and magnificent stained glass windows, the church actually has three organs—the main organ (which dates from 1857), an organ in the north aisle and a cabinet organ in the chancel of the church.
The work on the two recently restored organs was carried out by specialist company De Jongh Schilderwerken, who have worked on more than 60 organs in the Netherlands and have been in the business for four generations.
“The Oude Kerk is a special place because of its importance in Dutch history and it’s a beautiful and serene church,” explained Gerard de Jongh. “But it’s the two organs which really are the jewels. We’re painting and gilding the organ casing and are restoring the marble work under the balustrade of the large organ. For the marble we are using oil paints, for the remaining paint work Rubbol Satura.”
Built by famous organ maker Christian Gottlieb Friedrich Witte, the church’s main organ has 41 stops, divided over three keyboards and a free pedal, and has 2,580 pipes.
(Released: January 11, 2005)