Friday, July 2
Caught metro to city, and jumped on bus to go to Rijks Museum. WOW. It had been closed for ten years for remodelling, and reopened in 2013. The building was amazing, but the contents were mind blowing. Obviously there was a great deal concerning Dutch history, however the sculptures and paintings along with inlaid furniture, porcelains, Delft is just down the road, weaponry, and inventions were from all over the world.
The museum closed at five and we were not even half way through it. No problem, we would be back tomorrow. We then went to the Van Gogh Museum, two hundred metres away, because on Fridays it is open till ten. We had dinner first and then went on a short guided tour, before we were left to our own devices.
Van Gogh is an interesting story, but one which is very sad. He was not a natural painter, so went to college to learn how to, and then continually practiced. Not a bad effort, there were hundreds of his paintings and drawings. I suggest he was better at drawing than painting.
Vincent and his brother Teo were very close, and in fact Teo paid Vincent a monthly allowance for most of his adult life. It was interesting to see the different styles of his paintings, depending on his state of mind at the time. This was highly evident in his last four paintings prior to unfortunate death. There is currently much conjecture surrounding his death. There is very firm evidence to support the theory that he was accidentally shot by two small boys playing with a revolver, however Van Gogh did not want the boys to get into trouble, so he claimed he did it himself, not thinking he would die.
All the paintings, drawings and letters, belong to the Van Gogh family. When Vincent died, Teo was devastated, and he died four months later. Teo’s wife of two years began to sell some of the paintings, but then later on with the aid of Vincent William, her son, they decided to have them placed into a museum. The son drove a hard bargain, and eventually had the Dutch government build a new museum to his exacting design. The museum is currently undergoing a €30,000,000 facelift. All the money has been supplied by Japanese investors because they have a great affinity with Van Gogh
Ten rolled around all too soon, so it was a leisurely stroll along the canals, tram to the metro and back to Myrtle after an educational day.