The Dr. Anton C.R. Dreesmann Fellowship welcomes History of Art PhD candidates from the University of Pennsylvania to conduct dissertation research at the Rijksmuseum

We welcome international, independent research proposals which open new perspectives on the Rijksmuseum’s collection, its history and activities. The purpose of the Fellowship Programme is to encourage and support scholarly investigation, and to contribute to academic discourses while strengthening bonds between the museum and universities. The programme enables highly talented candidates to base part of their research at the Rijksmuseum, and offers access to the museum’s expertise, collections, library and laboratories. Furthermore, it facilitates opportunities for Fellows to engage in workshops and excursions to encourage exchange of knowledge - both amongst themselves and the broader museum audience.

The Dr. Anton C.R. Dreesmann Fellowship for art historical research

This Fellowship enables History of Art PhD candidates from the University of Pennsylvania to conduct dissertation research at the Rijksmuseum. The Fellowship is funded by a University of Pennsylvania alumna. Applications should include an outline of the proposed research, related to the Rijksmuseum's holdings, its history and activities. A suitable project might entail the study of art objects as artistic or historical sources or object-related archival research. The focus of research may encompass any of the museum’s varied holdings, including paintings, sculpture, decorative arts, prints, drawings, photography and historical artefacts.

The Fellowship will preferably result in a publication, the content and form of which will be decided by the Fellow and the academic advisors in consultation with the Rijksmuseum. The Rijksmuseum will provide joint working space for the Fellows and access will be given to all relevant resources in the museum, such as the Research Library Collections, collection documentation and the Rijksmuseum’s archives. A member of the museum's curatorial or scientific staff will be acting as advisor to each Fellow.


  • The Dr. Anton C.R. Dreesmann Fellowship supports PhD candidates whose proposal is embedded in the research plans of their forthcoming PhD dissertation.
  • Only History of Art PhD candidates from the University of Pennsylvania are eligible to apply. The candidate has to have a university-affiliated supervisor.
  • Candidates should have proven research capabilities, academic credentials and excellent command of the English language – both written and spoken. Proficiency in a second language (ideally Dutch or German) is preferred but not required.


Fellowship stipends are awarded to help support a Fellow’s study and research efforts during the tenure of the appointment. The stipend of €39,000 (subject to taxes and deductions) is for a period of twelve months commencing 1 September 2024, the start of the academic year.

The Fellowship will allow for limited travel for research in art collections and archives elsewhere in Europe to a maximum value of €5,000 annually. The Rijksmuseum will cover visa fees for the Fellow, but not for dependents.

Application and procedure

The Rijksmuseum is committed to actively promoting equality, diversity and inclusion. People with diverse backgrounds and experiences bring different perspectives to its collection and activities. This leads to new insights and enhances the museum’s innovative strength. We therefore warmly invite you to apply, regardless of your social or cultural background, sexual preference, gender, age or disability.

Complete applications have to be submitted through our online application system.

Further information

Coordinator of Academic Programmes

Made possible by the Dr. Anton C.R. Dreesmann Fund/ Rijksmuseum Fund