Amsterdam was my first foray into Europe and I do believe I picked a wonderful city to start in. Not only was it so beautiful... old world, but modern at the same time, but I loved all the little pleasures that came with it. Traveling by boat was very different.
I also like that people seem to put a lot of effort into getting dressed. It was something evident people must have thought about before exiting their homes. I was tickled, and was told to make sure I took some of my style along with.
my joe jeans and Diesel jacket came in handy for art and dinner
Since we got the dirt and mu naughty sexual escapades and out of the way first....now on to some more sites. Amsterdam offers many cultural experiences in the city and out. This post I'll share some of the sobering and sparkling places we went in the city, and in the next post some flowers and windmills!
Anne Frank is one of Amsterdam’s most well known former residents. The Anne Frank House at Prinsengracht 263 in Amsterdam is where she lived in hiding with her family for more than two years during World War II. I think I even remember it being said on the tour that they only had like three days to go before they would have been safe. Now converted into a museum it contains a sobering exhibition about the persecution of the Jews during the war, as well as discrimination in general.
The doorway to the annex was concealed behind a specially constructed movable bookcase. On August 4 1944, their hiding place was betrayed. The people in hiding were deported to various concentration camps. Only Otto Frank survived the war. Anne’s diary from the period was published and became a bestseller worldwide.
The rooms at the Anne Frank House still portray the atmosphere of the period spent in hiding. Historical documents, photographs, film images and original objects that belonged to those in hiding and those who assisted them help illustrate the events that took place. Anne’s original diary and other notebooks are also on display in the museum.
Amsterdam, the city of creative culture and picturesque sights. Known for its liberal attitudes, canal rings and some of the finest museums in the world. One of them, the Van Gogh Museum.....
There is enough Vincent van Gogh work to fill up two stories and a couple of intense hours. It is the largest collection of the artist’s works, with more than 200 paintings as well as hundreds of drawings, letters and some personal belongings. For a more immersion into his mind, the museum also displays a collection of Van Gogh’s fellow painters, contemporaries and a source of inspiration to his work; as well as artists whom he inspired – From Monet and Gauguin to Félix Vallotton. The fact that one of the two versions of “Sunflowers” has been lent to the Tate Museum in London came as a bit of a downer. However it compensates by so many other breath taking works such as Irises, Starry Night and self portraits and yes, the Wheatfield with Crows – the revolutionary masterpiece, raw and turbulent, no less than the painting that brings Modern Art into the world and the last he produced before committing suicide.
Going to Amsterdam and missing this museum would be, for an art lover, pretty much as going to Rome and missing the architecture. Van Gogh is an institution for art and well celebrated here.
The Homomonument is a memorial in the centre of Amsterdam and worth a look......
It commemorates all gay men and lesbians who have been subjected to persecution because of their homosexuality. Opened in 1987, it takes the form of three large pink triangles made of granite, set into the ground so as to form a larger triangle, on the bank of the Keizersgracht canal, near the historic Westerkerk church. The Homomonument was designed to "inspire and support lesbians and gays in their struggle against denial, oppression and discrimination." It was the first monument in the world to commemorate gays and lesbians who were killed by the Nazis
The Rembrandt House was a little something extra we had time to see while there. Rembrandt lived and painted here in this house between 1639 and 1658!!!!!!!! It is now a museum, and the only place where his graphics are permanently exhibited.
The house was built on two lots in the eastern part of the city. Many rich merchants and artists settled in this new part of town back then. Next door in a new modern building that in now also part of the museum complex. It very very cool to think we were where this artist once was, creating master pieces.
more to come........