Religion and Realism
During a time of war and political tension, the Dutch and Spanish painting traditions approached closer to each other than it is generally thought. The 17th century has become known as the Golden Age of painting in both the Netherlands and Spain. It was a period of tremendous artistic achievement that saw the emergence of two of the greatest painters in history, Rembrandt and Velázquez, the leading artists of their respective countries. Both masters worked in a climate that included many other painters who enjoyed great reputation, such as Zurbarán and Murillo in Spain, and Vermeer and Frans Hals in the Netherlands
Although there was no direct contact between the painters from the North and South, they show clear similarities, not only in artistic ambition, but in the impulse towards realism and their illustration of religious themes.
Display in pairs
In this exhibition, paintings of highly-renowned masters will be displayed in pairs, combining two works from each country, to explore, for the first time, the stimulating and often surprising dialogues that inevitably arise between the works. By pairing the paintings together, the exhibition sheds light on their common points, although sometimes the differences might seem stronger than the similarities. Each pair has a story behind, a specific theme that brings the two paintings together. A wide variety of themes will be therefore represented: from concepts such as religion, faith, wealth or love to artistic challenges such as composition, light and shadow.
Tickets and start time
In order to visit the exhibition it is necessary to book a start time. You can book them via this link.
- Are you a Friend of the Rijksmuseum? Then you do not have to book a start time and can visit Rembrandt-Velazquez unlimited.
- Also with an ICOM card you do not have to book a start time.
- You will need to book a start time with a: regular ticket or a Museumkaart, BankGiro Loterij VIP-KAART, Membership card KOG, VVAK, Vereniging Rembrandt, or I Amsterdam City Card.
Are you planning to come with a group of 15 guests or more? Please book a group ticket via this link.
Rembrandt-Velázquez. Dutch & Spanish Masters has come about through a unique partnership between the Rijksmuseum and Museo Nacional del Prado in Madrid.
The exhibition in Madrid titled Velázquez, Rembrandt, Vermeer: Parallel Visions, which ran to 29 September 2019, was different in form and content from this exhibition in Amsterdam. The Rijksmuseum loaned a large number of works to the Prado, including three paintings by Rembrandt. The Prado has loaned 14 masterpieces to the Rijksmuseum, including six paintings by Velázquez. In addition, the exhibition in the Rijksmuseum presents works from more than 20 other museums and collections from all over the world, including the United States, Germany, the United Kingdom, Spain and the Netherlands.
Curators and design
The exhibition has been curated by Gregor Weber, the head of the Rijksmuseum’s Fine and Decorative Arts Department, and assistant curator Cèlia Querol Torelló.
The exhibition design is by the French designer Jean Michel Wilmotte.
Rembrandt-Velázquez. Dutch and Spanish Masters, Gregor J.M. Weber explores the underlying themes of the pairs, Dutch author Cees Nooteboom takes the reader on an exploration of his memories of Spain, and Hans den Hartog Jager describes the differences, bust most importantly, the similarities between two of the greatest painters of all time. The graphic design is by Irma Boom.
Title: Rembrandt-Velázquez. Dutch and Spanish Masters
Dutch and English edition.
ISBN: NL 9789462085282 | ENG 9789462085275
In the book published to accompany the exhibition,
The exhibition Rembrandt-Velázquez is made possible by Ammodo, Holland America Line, Rijksmuseum International Circle and the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science.
2019 – Rembrandt and the Dutch Golden Age
This year is the 350th anniversary of the death of Rembrandt van Rijn (1606-1669), reason enough to honour Rembrandt and devote extra attention to the artist, his work, his contemporaries and the 17th century. The year-long theme of Rembrandt and the Dutch Golden Age brings all these aims together, with many exhibitions and activities taking place around the Netherlands.
In 2019, NBTC Holland Marketing, the Fries Museum, the Mauritshuis, the Rembrandt House Museum, the Rijksmuseum, Museum De Lakenhal, the Amsterdam Museum, the Jewish Cultural Quarter, Museum Prinsenhof Delft, the National Maritime Museum in Amsterdam, and the Amsterdam city archive are working together with cities including Amsterdam, Delft, The Hague, Dordrecht, Enkhuizen, Haarlem, Hoorn, Leiden and Middelburg on Rembrandt and the Dutch Golden Age.