Amsterdam: Museum Quarter

Amsterdam Museum Quarter consists of three remarkable museums. It is hard to digest them all at once, but the time was short.

Rijksmuseum is the biggest one. It definitely can be listed along with the most famous world museums as Ermitage, Louvre, or Vatican Museums. It is huge and is obviously famous because of the masters of Netherlands, including especially Rembrandt, who lived here in Amsterdam. The “Night Guard” occupies a whole one wall on the most presentable floor (and a sculpture copy of it stands in front of the Rembrandt statue on the square of his name). Standing in front of the painting you can easily play a game “find 10 intriguing details” — or maybe you could easily do it if not for a crowd of people who really dream about having a selfie with the ,,Night guard”…

Personally I prefer more modest things, and so I could not tear my eyes away from ,,The Milkmaid” of Vermeer. You just need to see it for yourself to understand why. Any photo cannot reflect it.

The second museum is the Van Gogh museum with the most famous of his paintings, e.g. ,,The sunflowers”. It is somehow different from any other museum. You feel the air of indulgent understanding mixed with a fear of lack of it. Compassion and remorse of the mankind mixed with afterthought and a feeling that you see something important. The painting with black birds on the dark sky over a field of wheat is strangely coherent with this feeling.

An the third one — Stedelijk Museum, i.e. a museum of modern art. In such places I definitely feel lost… And the old small building of the museum joined with a modern white block, which clearly contradicts the gravity force only magnifies this impression.

Jaques Brel sang about sailors of Amsterdam: ,,when he can’t go on, he plants his nose in the sky, wipes it up above”. It may be that the Museum District is a memento of those controversial heights.