The Building from the Exterior

The renovation by the Spanish architectural agency Cruz y Ortiz Architectos has transformed the building into a magnificent twenty-first century museum. It features a large, light entrance hall, a new Asian Pavilion and beautifully refurbished galleries. In several of the museum's main spaces, a team led by Van Hoogevest restoration architects has fully reconstructed Pierre Cuypers’ rich decorative programme. In his design for the new gallery interiors, Parisian-based architect Jean-Michel Wilmotte has achieved a synthesis between the original nineteenth-century grandeur and a modern sensibility.

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Present and Past

Rijksmuseum as seen from Weteringschans

Rijksmuseum as seen from Museumplein


Rijksmuseum as seen from Stadhouderskade

Rijksmuseum as seen from Museumplein, 2013

Rijksmuseum as seen from Museumplein, 2007


The Rijksmuseum lightened up during an art project by Germaine Kruip, 2005


Rijksmuseum as seen fom Singel canal, 1980

Rijksmuseum, c. 1920 - c. 1939


Rijksmuseum as seen from the north-west, c. 1910

fig. 25 RP-T-00-3192-custom

Perspective section of the Rijksmuseum, 1890

hoofdgebouw 1888

Front façade of the Rijksmuseum with the Singel canal in the foreground, 1888


Rijksmuseum, c. 1885


Building the Rijksmuseum, as seen from the north, c. 1879

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History of the Rijksmuseum

Our online collection contains a lot more photographs of the Rijksmuseum throughout the years. This link shows, for instance, what the Rijksmuseum building used to look like.

Curious about the rich history of Rijksmuseum building and galleries? Take a look in the historical archive.

The building