Amsterdam Off The Beaten Path Tips by leafmcgowan
Amsterdam Off The Beaten Path: 523 reviews and 765 photos
Ouderkerksplein, Amsterdam, Holland
Embedded into the sidewalk, between the sidewalk stones of the Ouderkerksplein and the square that surrounds the Old Church in the Red Light District is a bronze/iron sculpture of a hand caressing a breast. The artist is unknown. This sculpture was left secretly in the wee hours of the night. Over the last 15 years, this same unknown artist has placed numerous bronze and iron statues all over town, anomynously in the night. It's been discovered the artist is a local doctor who does the art in his spare time. The City of Amsterdam has since accepted his works as long as the identity of the artist is never revealed. This particular sculpture is a bronze female bust on the pavement in front of the Oude Kerk on Oudekerksplein square. It represents the women of the Red Light District. Rating: 5 stars out of 5.
Many of the buildings along the canals are "leaning"</DIV><BR />Because the buildings have "winches" atop them and for years, this is how residents move their furniture in and out of the upper floors, the buildings have been pulled forward to support the weight, and actually are "leaning". This was done so hoisted items don't hit the walls. Some say the City is taking steps to remove "winching". Some say they are built that way to let the rain run off of them. Because you were "taxed" based on the width of your house, many houses were built "thin" and therefore had small doorways and stairwells going to the upper floors. Winches installed to move up larger furniture. Some of the buildings lean of "old age" and settling on sandy soil, lacking proper pillars, or rotting columns/supports.
Amsterdams Historisch Museum Exhibition: Old Masters of Amsterdam 6 March–9 August 2009 Amsterdams Historisch Museum (AHM) (Amsterdam Historical Museum).
Nieuwezijds Voorburgwal 359 * 1012 RM AMSTERDAM
This special exhibit tells the fascinating stories about the formation and growth of the rich collection of paintings owned by the city of Amsterdam. With over a thousand works painted before 1800, the city of Amsterdam has one of the world’s finest collections of Old Masters. It includes some of the best works by famous artists such as Rembrandt, Ferdinand Bol, Jacob van Ruisdael and Govert Flinck. This exhibition tells the story of the different ways in which the city acquired these paintings. These paintings exemplify Dutch Golden Age artistry. During the Dutch Golden Age the painters received monetary compensation for painting their subjects. Where the subject would appear was based on how much they paid. If someone paid a high price, they would be "front and center" in the painting, and often depicted in a favorable pose and in high-status clothing. If they didn't pay enough they would be in the background, hidden, or only a half face or with a silly grin drinking a pint of beer. The exhibit was fabulous. Rating: 5 stars out of 5.
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The Multatuli statue was an inspirational work of contemporary Dutch artist Hans Bayens (b. 1924) as a tribute to Eduard Douwens Dekker. Eduard Douwes Dekker (1820-1887) who was a strong critic of Dutch imperialism and a popular Dutch satirist of the 19th century. He revelled and was famous for his skewering of the middle classes in their classism and racism. Dekker was actually born in Amsterdam as his father was a ship's captain. His father intended for Dekker to follow in his footsteps but trade disgusted Dekker and in 1838 he became a civil servant in Java and eventually became the assistant-resident at Ambon. In 1857 he was transferred to the Bantam residency of Java in Lebak gaining all the secrets of the Dutch administration in his career progressions. He really hated the abuses of the colonial system and was threatened with dismissal from his office for his verbal protests. Upon his resignation and return to the Netherlands, he became much more vocal about his indignation and desire to expose all of the scandals he witnessed. He did so by the sword of the pen in newspaper articles and pamphlets, and finally in 1860 with his novel "Max Havelaar" under the pseudonym of "Multatuli". This name was derived from Latin and means "I have suffered (or witnessed) much". He exposed the abuse of free labour in the Dutch Indies and caused quite a controversy. He went on to publish Love Letters in 1861 which were mordant unsparing satires. After Dekker left the Netherlands to live in Wiesbaden, he became interested in theater. He wrote the School for Princes (1875 in the fourth volume of Ideas) which expressed his non-conformist views on politics, society and religion. He eventually moved his residence to Nieder Ingelheim, on the Rhine, where he died in 1887. By 2002 the Society for Dutch Literature proclaimed Multatuli the most important Dutch writer of all time.
Claimed to be the narrowest house in the world, it is most certain the thinnest in all of Amsterdam is located at Singel 7. It is just a meter wide (3 1/2 feet), barely wider than the front door. Its a false illusion though, only the front facade is so narrow as behind that it broadens out to more normal proportions. The real narrowest house is at Oude Hoogstraat 22 between the Dam and Nieuwmarkt. It possesses the typical Amsterdam bell gable and is 2 meters (6 1/2 ft) wide and 6 meters (20 feet) deep. Its closest rival is 2.4 meters wide (7 3/4 feet) wide which is nearby at Kloveniersburgwal 26; this is the cornice-gabled Klein Trippenhuis, also known as Mr. Trip's Coachman's House which faces the elegant Trippenhuis at no. 29, which, at 22m (72 ft.), is the widest Old Amsterdam house. This was done in all of these cases to escape high taxes which the Dutch imposed based on the width of the house facade. A common evasion tactic still made life difficult.
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