Another museum we really enjoyed seeing in Amsterdam was the home of Rembrandt van Rijn from 1639-1658. It’s pretty remarkable to see, as restored in 1911. This is what the museum website says about the restoration:
In order to tackle the restoration plans as meticulously as possible, a restoration team was put together. It was headed by the building historian Henk Zantkuijl, an expert in seventeenth-century houses. The plan was based on historical knowledge built up over many years. There was also a thorough study of available sources. The inventories of the house were very important—the inventory of 1626 belonging to the first occupant of the house and, in particular, the inventory that was compiled in 1656 because of Rembrandt’s bankruptcy. This latter source enabled the experts to work out how the house was laid out during this period and how Rembrandt had used the different rooms. Some of Rembrandt’s drawings and etchings provided additional information.
Here are some photos from this wonderful old building:
These represent some of the items Rembrandt would use for models as he painted:
This is the room where his artwork was on display for purchase.
Best of all, they had a lot of his paintings and sketches on display.
This is called “The Triumph of Mordecai.”
This one is a beautiful nativity scene.
This is the front door of the house, along with a view along the canal; this was a great museum to explore!
My last post spoke about Dutch tourism in some of the fishing villages we visited. Yes, we see tourism all the time in our travels (and tourism is good for the economy), but we do try, also, to discover the “real” culture of the countries we visit. This particular area was clearly a tourist spot, as multiple signs directed us right down the street to the nearest wooden shoe factory. They are pumping them out here at a rate you wouldn’t believe, and I didn’t find them particularly comfortable, though I was hoping to find some that would work. You will note a “shark wooden shoe” below, which we thought was funny.
This shop was also a lovely museum. Of course, wooden shoes are one of the most distinct items of interest to purchase or see in Holland. They are completely authentic and historical to the culture, and are beautiful. We saw them on walls as decoration, in every tourist shop, on the feet of fishermen and shopkeepers, in windmills, and being used as planters. They’re wonderful! Who doesn’t love a pair of clogs that do fit well? Unfortunately, I didn’t find them in Holland, although I must admit I didn’t really take the time to look for them, nor did I have room in my backpack to bring them home. Maybe some day I’ll have time to select some authentic dutch shoes.
We loved our trip to some fishing villages in The Netherlands, but we did notice upon arrival in Marken that it was not as “authentic,” perhaps as Volendam had been. Marken seemed more of a tourist area, at least initially (which is all we really had time to see). Still, it was beautiful and fun to visit.
These stools were funny!
Amid all the touristy items that were for sale, though, I was thrilled to find this little fabric store!
OK, the fabric was very unique to the Dutch culture, although a bit touristy, too, perhaps, but I did love seeing examples of how this fabric is used for local clothing.