Art Box portal //
Imagine living in a city where museums are open every day of the year. Among them is the Rijksmuseum, one of Amsterdam’s landmarks, located on Museum Square (Museumstraat 1), which is also home to the Van Gogh Museum and the Stedelijk Museum. This largest Dutch national art museum holds masterpieces by Rembrandt, Frans Hals, and Johannes Vermeer.
Amsterdam’s famous Rijksmuseum, home to Rembrandt’s The Night Watch, was opened in 1800 in The Hague under the name National Art Gallery. As the number of exhibits in the Gallery began to grow, in 1808, the collection was moved to the Royal Palace in Amsterdam. Subsequently, one part of the collection was relocated to another palace, while the other part was returned to The Hague until the construction of the building in the Dutch Renaissance style designed by Pierre Cuypers was completed.
The Rijksmuseum is the iconic museum of the Netherlands. After ten years of rebuilding, refurbishing, and renovating, the Rijksmuseum once again opened its doors to the public in full splendor on 13 April 2013. Both the building and the presentation of the collection underwent a total transformation. This revamping resulted in surprising furnishings, beautiful exhibitions, dazzling events, and numerous facilities for young and old. The Rijksmuseum’s world-famous collection is being presented in an entirely new way. Visitors go on a journey through the ages and experience a sense of beauty and of time. In 80 galleries, 8,000 objects tell the story of 800 years of Dutch art and history, from the Middle Ages to Mondrian. The Rijksmuseum is made possible by Founder Philips and main sponsors BankGiro Loterij, ING and KPN.
The most significant works include:
Rembrandt’s masterpiece „The Night Watch“
Johannes Vermeer’s „The Milkmaid“
Vincent van Gogh’s „Self-portrait“
Jan Steen’s „The Merry Family“
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Palace on Dam Square. However, the wall they intended to place it on was too small. Instead of choosing another wall, they decided to cut a portion of the painting to fit. As a result, two male figures on the left side of the painting, which were originally painted, are missing.
The Rijksmuseum is the only museum in the world with a road inside of it. It was constructed at the edge of the historical city center of Amsterdam, serving as a historical gate into the city. The road was open for motorized vehicles until 1931, but that wasn’t the best solution for exhibits and the building itself. Cars were banned, and nowadays, it’s open for bicycles only.
The museum was built on some 8,000 piles, which are still supporting the building today.
Contemporary (woman) artist
In addition to the museum’s primary mission and the nature of its permanent collection, the Rijksmuseum also hosts exhibitions that feature contemporary visual artists. For instance, until January 14, 2024, around 90 works from the Boijmans Van Beuningen collection were on display at the Rijksmuseum. Not only showcasing old masters but also presenting contemporary (women) artists such as Cindy Sherman and Yayoi Kusama, the exhibition ‘Boijmans van Beuningen at Rijksmuseum’ brings together diverse works. These include artworks by Pieter Bruegel, Edgar Degas, Pablo Picasso, and Cindy Sherman among others, exploring various aspects of human life from birth to death.
The Rijksmuseum Schipol
Did you know that travelers flying in and out of Schiphol Airport can admire famous Dutch paintings at the airport? In 2002, the Rijksmuseum became the first art museum to open a branch at an airport. The Netherlands’ most renowned museum has a gallery space in the terminal. It’s a great way to discover Dutch art if you don’t have time to visit the museum in Amsterdam.
Also, souvenirs from the Rijksmuseum and other Dutch museums are available in the adjacent shop at Schiphol Airport.
The Rijksmuseum is open to the public every day of the year from 9 am to 5 pm, including all public holidays. It is open 365 days a year, with free admission for everyone 18 years of age and under.