Monday, 29 February 2016

Amster-dayum Day 3 - The 9 Streets District

The 9 Streets district is a famous part of Amsterdam and home to Anne Frank Huis. Unfortunately the queues for Anne Frank Huis were huge and I can't stand for that long so we had to give it a miss. 

Some of the basement flats have really short doors, and I always thought the Dutch were tall. I have no idea how people managed to get in a door that was 4 and a half foot tall.

Another precarious looking canal house.

And this is how to remove builder's waste in Amsterdam, by crane on to a barge.

Vintage store with a difference, perfect if you have a very deep purse, the LV suitcase in the window was 1800 Euros.

You can also take horse drawn carriage rides around the city. 

The museum of spectacles! Another one to visit properly when I return.

Bought a vintage fur scarf in this shop. 

Although it was cold, it was a beautiful sunny day.

A shop selling a myriad of bow ties.

I took an Uber down to Albert Cuyp market. There was only one shop that was interesting to me, another vintage shop but I didn't find anything to buy in this one either.

Did love these chairs too.

And a fabric store/stall that had some interesting fabrics.

Waiting to board our plane home :(

There was a glorious full moon, unfortunately I couldn't really capture it from the plane window, this was the best shot I got.

And finally back at Gatwick where a love story was unfolding. This guy was waiting (and pacing) outside International Arrivals with a big bouquet of flowers.

Sunday, 28 February 2016

Amster-dayum - Day 2 - The Rijksmuseum

This is a must do if you visit Amsterdam. I would have liked to do the Van Gogh museum too but ran out of steam. Bloody fibro is sometimes a pain in the arse.

There is a small garden outside the museum that you can explore for free. Knowing my stamina for walking was limited I just took pictures from the walkway into the museum. Love the statues greened with age.

Front of the Rijksmuseum.

Amazing stain glass in hall.

The floor had some gorgeous mosaics.

More stain glass.

More mosaics.

Paintings on the end wall.

View of the entire hallway.

Satyr and Nymph by Gerard van Honthorst. Love the sensuality in this picture.

The Milkmaid by Johannes Vermeer. The light, colour and definition in this was exquisite. I can see why this spot in Vermeer's house was his favourite for posing his models, and appears in many of his paintings. The lighting in this spot is perfect. It was hard to get a good picture of this painting as there were so many people around it.

A ship on the high seas caught in a squall by Willem van de Velde II - the sky in this one reminded me of the Turner's I've seen in the National Gallery.

Festoon of Fruits and Flowers by Jan Davidsz de Heem -  when you look closely at this picture you can see lots of bugs and insects. It is sumptuous and beautiful.

Still Life with Silver Ewer by Willem Kalf - the painting of the silver ewer is just wow. I loved the way the light was bouncing off this piece.

Militia Company of District II Under the Command of Captain Frans Banninck Cocq - otherwise known as The Night Watch - by Rembrandt Harmensz van Rijn. The original painting was wider but canvas was removed from the edges so it could be fitted between two doorways when it was moved to Amsterdam.

Still life with Peacocks by Rembrandt - apparently peacocks were quite the delicacy at some point, the sacrilege!

The Drunken Couple by Jan Havicksz Steen - humorous picture of a drunk couple who are so inebriated they don't realise they are being robbed.

Militia Company of District XI under the Command of Captain Reynier Reael - known as The Meagre Company - painted by Frans Hals and finished by Pieter Codde when Hals failed to deliver the portraits on time. Codde tried to imitate the more flamboyant style of Frans Hals but it is thought he painted the 7 figures on the right of the picture.

Portrait of Eduard Wallis by Johannes Cornelisz Verspronck - this painting looks almost like a photograph. I was really impressed by the detail and quality of it. The subject was a wealthy cloth merchant.

Memorial portrait of Moses ter Borch by Gerard and Gesina ter Borch. It commemorates the life of Moses, he is surrounded by emblems that celebrate his life.

The Battle of the Downs by Willem van de Velde I - spectacular ink on canvas, the detail is almost as fine as you would find on a bank note but the picture is huge.

The Battle of Terheide by Willem van de Velde I - another ink on paper picture with amazing details.

Model of the William Rex - a Dutch warship. The details are amazing.

A celestial globe, with a close up on Leo - Alan's star sign.

A terrestrial globe, this time I focussed on Britain.

Warships in a Heavy Storm by Ludolf Bakhuysen - The ship at the centre, The Hollandia, was badly damaged in a storm near Gibraltar.

The Cuypers Library and Reading Room in the Rijksmuseum. You can visit here and research the rare and antique manuscripts.

Portrait of Gerard Andriesz Bicker by Bartholomeus van der Helst - portrait of a self assured twenty year old who held administrative positions in Amsterdam like his father, though his portrait is far more flamboyant.

The Corpses of the De Witt Brothers - probably by Jan de Baen - Assassinated by political opponents, the naked and flayed bodies of Johan and Cornelis de Witt were displayed on the Execution Ground of The Hague.

Panel with Pyramis and Thisbe - stone inlaid with mother of pearl and marble. This was just breathtaking.

Allegory of the Sciences by Gerard de Lairesse.  Whilst this looks three dimensional it is a painting.

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