Van Gogh is one of the first names that come to mind when you think of Amsterdam and one of the world’s most recognized artists and painters. The Van Gogh Museum is the world-famous building in Amsterdam’s Museum Square where the works of the Dutch painter are exhibited and which breaks visitation records.
The Van Gogh Museum was built by Dutch designer and architect Gerrit Rietveld. The building was completed after the architect’s death and opened to visitors in 1973. Van Gogh’s drawings and paintings are on display in some parts of the world, but the museum in Amsterdam is the largest museum dedicated to Van Gogh.
The story of Vincent Van Gogh
Born in 1853, Vincent Van Gogh started his painting career after 1880 with gloomy colors, but the new movements he met in Paris brought vitality to his colors. Van Gogh developed his own technique over time and started to paint the most expensive paintings in the world. Van Gogh’s meeting with Paul Gauguin is one of the most important points in his life.
The artists, who painted together for a while, began to constantly argue about their painting techniques and understanding.
One day in December 1888, Gauguin rushed out of the house after a quarrel, whereupon Van Gogh, fearing that he would leave him, cut off the lower part of his left ear. (Some records claim that he cut off most of his ear.) He gave the piece of ear wrapped in cloth to someone working in a nearby brothel and fainted.
Gauguin learned of Van Gogh’s hospitalization and never saw Van Gogh again. The artist, who later lost his sanity and began to hallucinate, was hospitalized in a mental hospital in southern France and began to spend his days there.
In his 1889 painting Starry Night, he exaggerated the sky seen from the window of the asylum. In the following months, Van Gogh’s mental health deteriorated and he had to take a break from painting when he started to eat the paints he painted with.
Feeling better in the following months, Van Gogh left the asylum and stayed under the supervision of a doctor who worked with painters with mental problems. In mid-1890, Van Gogh shot himself in the chest with a pistol in a field and returned to his hotel.
Seeing Van Gogh’s wounds as he lay on his bed, the hotel owner informed the doctor and his brother, who told him that the bullet could not be removed and he died two days later in the arms of his brother Theo.
The collection in Van Gogh Museum
The Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam houses the world’s largest collection of works by the famed Dutch post-Impressionist artist. The museum’s collection includes over 200 paintings by Van Gogh, 500 drawings, and 750 letters written by the artist.
Visitors to the museum can see well-known Van Gogh paintings such as The Potato Eaters, Sunflowers, and Starry Night.
The museum also has a number of lesser-known but equally important works in its collection, including early drawings and sketches that provide insights into Van Gogh’s creative process.
In addition to Van Gogh’s works, the museum also hosts temporary exhibitions of other famous and contemporary artists. Van Gogh’s drawings, letters, mostly written to Theo, and Japanese prints can also be seen in the museum.
When you leave your bag in the cloakroom and enter the first floor of the museum, you will see Van Gogh’s works arranged chronologically. This floor mainly features self-portraits and is the most important floor of the museum.
Photography is forbidden in the Van Gogh Museum without special permission. If you are a journalist, blogger or vlogger, you need special permission.
What are the entrance fee and visiting hours of Van Gogh Museum?
Amsterdam Card is valid at the museum. If you have an Amsterdam card, go directly to the line in front of the Van Gogh Museum. There are two different lines here, the ones with the most people in line are the ones without an Amsterdam card.
When the staff see that you have a card, they put you in the fastest line and your turn will come faster.
The museum, which is open to visitors between 09:00 – 19:00 every day during the summer period, is open until 22:00 on Fridays and until 21:00 on Saturdays. The most crowded hours of the museum, where you can spend 75 minutes on average, are between 11:00 – 15:00.
Where is the Van Gogh Museum and how to get there?
The Van Gogh Museum is located in Museumplein, known as Museum Square, in the south of Amsterdam. Transportation to the Van Gogh Museum is very easy. Trams numbered 2, 5 and buses numbered 170, 172 pass close to Museumplein.