Sunday, 30 September 2012

Amsterdam Museums

The purpose of the trip to Amsterdam was to see the Impressionist Art exhibition at the Hermitage - the paintings are those from the collection held at the parent museum in St Petersburg, Russia.  However the first museum I went to was the tiny Tulip Museum set on a canal just opposite the Anne Frank House:-

When you go into the museum itself you pass through a door which, when you open it, pulls a door across at the opposite end which has a mirror on it - there are rows of colourful wooden tulips either side of the entrance and the mirrored door makes it look longer than it is and like you are standing in a real life tulip field in full bloom - nice idea!
After watching a short film about the history 
of the tulip you enter a room where you read 
various facts about tulips and their history.

I liked this interesting script - enlarge the 
photos so you can read it.

More lovely pictures of tulips.

In a huge circle hanging the ceiling lots of tulip 
labels and pictures to read.

The new variety "Ice Cream" tulip
 I have bought some bulbs to plant
 - I can't wait to see these grow in my garden! 
I saw them a few years ago at The Keukenhof 
so now I can grown my own!  The price 
was miles cheaper in Amsterdam too.

A typical - beautiful - Flemish painting of Tulips.
A cute use for some clogs!

Some charming tulip vases - some even had 
real tulips in them despite the wrong time of year!

A new area of the museum under 
construction will show the farming 
methods - here are the tools of
the trade.

More tools and some photos of 
tulip farming in the old days!

Another lovely tulip display.

I really loved the Tulip Museum - it was small yes, but it did the job of relating the history of tulips and the shop has a lovely selection of bulbs to buy including a lot of species types so I bought a few of the really tiny ones to try.  I am waiting for October so that I can plant them.  The museum seemed to employ lots of novel ideas as well like some flower heads that you pull down over your head in order to sniff the scent and guess if it is tulip, daffodil or hyacinths!

The next museum we went to was the Amsterdam Hermitage - just a few pics of this as strictly photography is not permitted;-) and look NO hideous crowds like you get in Paris!
A huge mural greets the visitors to the exhibition. 
It made you feel like you were in the picture!

As it is a few weeks since my visit I can't 
remember the artist or name of the 
picture but I like it. The couple were eloping!

2 of the big Monet's - I particularly like the 
lady with the parasol painting which I saw in
Paris in 2011.

A beautiful Renoir - not the best photo sorry.

I can't remember the artists again but the 
pictures are lovely.

A slightly closer photo of the Monet.

The exhibition poster.

The next day we popped over to Museumsplein and saw the Van Gogh Museum from the outside - we didn't go in, but there was an interesting installation outside copying a Van Gogh in stones:-
The Van Gogh Musuem will be opening in 
the spare wing of the Hermitage while some 
renovation is done (I think).

The stone work painting you can make out 
the house.

The information panel shows the painting copied

It shows the outlines laid out in stone.

After walking through the Museumsplein we went to the Coster Diamonds House - there was a brief guided tour but really I knew more about diamonds that I was told there.  I didn't like the jewellery designs much - very old fashioned and hardly "cutting edge" for a European Diamond House!  I would say you are not missing much if you didn't go here!
A case showing diamonds in various stages.

Some nice earrings - one of the better designs.

At Dam Square we went to visit the Royal Palace - this building started out life as the Town Hall so it is not as ornate as a purpose built palace.  In fact it was quite austere in parts.  Can you believe my handbag had to be deposited as it was too large - it is only like a 32cm Bolide size - and Buckingham Palace allow it in!!!  Anyway I digress (but you can tell I was annoyed!)
The spectacular entrance hall with Atlas 
holding the world up!

One of the lovely chandeliers.

The floor was inlaid with 2 fabulous maps 
of the world and the universe - they 
were too large to photograph properly.

This bust interested me - not for the man but 
for the details......

...look at the intricate details of his 
medals!  Amazing how this could be 
carved from marble so precisely.
One of the many lovely clocks on display.
A lovely wooden model of the palace and 
Dam Square.

I hope you liked seeing a few of the museums in Amsterdam!

Sunday, 23 September 2012


I went to Amsterdam recently for a short break - it was lovely and sunny there unlike home, which has been awful this "summer".  Anyway the canals were looking lovely I can't remember which is which, but they will be either Herrengracht, Prinzengracht or Kaisersgracht! Enjoy my wander through Amsterdam:-

A house boat owner's take on a garden - lovely!

Gnomes get everywhere LOL! Very cute.
Typical Dutch architecture

These house boats are opposite the 
Anne Frank House.

Parked bicycles crowd a bridge.

Interesting boat shaped lamps reflecting 
Amsterdam's affiliation with the sea.

One of the big hotels in Amsterdam which sits 
on the Amstel.

Difficult see here (it's better at night as it is lit) look 
beyond the locks in  the foreground but you can just 
make out the Magere Brug which translates to 
"Skinny Bridge" and is said to be Amsterdam's 
most beautiful bridge.

The Amstel.

Another lovely house boat garden. 

A close up!

Here you can just about see through one 
bridge to the others beyond.

Lovely geraniums adorning these windows.

More lovely gabled buildings - they are a
bit wonky in places!

One of many lovely hanging baskets of 
geraniums on a bridge.