/ The Amsterdam Guide
Amsterdam — By Marianne on May 12, 2010 at 12:04 pm
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Room for Art in Mauritshuis Museum, The Hague

One of Amsterdam’s delights is the number of top-notch museums. Marvel at Van Gogh ‘s paintings, learn about marihuana in the Hash, Marihuna & Hemp Museum or giggle at sex in the Sex Museum. Amsterdam has a museum for everyone. Still, I would strongly advise you to go to the Mauritshuis Museum in The Hague and visit the Room for Art exhibition.

Room for Art exhibits Art Cabinets, often referred to as Kunstkammer, paintings showing a room full of art. Antwerp born Willem van Haecht was one of the first painters of this genre. These pictures show large rooms whose walls are crammed with paintings from top to bottom. More paintings stand on the floor and lean against a chest or a table. A tall window allows daylight to illuminate the works of art in the painting. The owner of the art collection is often depicted together with visiting connoisseurs. They gather round a table laden with curiosities like rare shells, scientific instruments or drawings.

The Gallery of Cornelis van der Geest, Willem van Haecht 1628

Antwerp born Willem van Haecht (1593-1637) was one of the first painters of this genre. Few artists adopted this exclusive genre. Only a hundred or so Art Cabinets were painted. An Art Cabinet painting was either a fictitious place in which the artist painted an ideal art collection or the interior really existed. In that case the art collector commissioned the painting to show off his collection.

Willem van Haecht painted three Art Cabinets. All three show the impressive art collection of Cornelis van der Geest, an art collector, who employed Van Haecht as the curator of his collection. Van Haecht’s three outstanding paintings are now in the Mauritshuis in The Hague.

WHAT: Room for Art Exhibition until 27 June 2010
WHERE: Mauritshuis, Korte Vijverberg 8, The Hague (map)
OPENING HOURS: Mon – Sat 10 am – 5 pm, Sundays 11 am – 5 pm
Train from Amsterdam Centraal Station to The Hague Centraal
Tram 16 or 17 or just ten minutes on foot.

Photo credit: Wikipedia

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    1 Comment

  • Christina says:

    This is fabulous – I feel like you wrote it just for Josh (my husband) :) He’ll be in The Hague for 3 weeks in the fall. So far the plan is for me to meet him there, we’ll spend a couple of days in Amsterdam/The Hague and then travel elsewhere for 4-5 days. I’d love some suggestions for great destinations in November!

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