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Monday, August 11, 2014

Van Gogh Museum

A must - you would say when in Amsterdam. I'm not the most motivated museum goer and Van Gogh is not my most revered painter. Having said that, we felt it was de rigeuer...
The first hurdle of getting tickets is easily overcome by buying them online. You can even choose a specific hour of the day you'd like to be admitted. How whole families with little children queue outside, rain or shine, beats me if there is an easier way.
Spoiler alert: Most of his hardhitters, the most famous pictures were not there!
Sunflowers yes, Starry nights, THE self-portrait: NO! They are in NY or in another museum in a different part of the world.
Every hour they let in about 100 people who then move slowly past the pictures on 3 floors. The audio guide, however, only comments on about 9 pictures out of the 30 or more on the ground floor. We saw 3 other self-portraits by the master himself which were not honored by any explanation. How many did he draw?
If you're interested more in his artistic development and have techniques explained, then you won't be disappointed.
Friday night, unfortunately, was also the time for musical entertainment for the visitors.The group was substandard- sorry, but loud. So loud in fact, we had to give up on our audio guide system.
I liked the museum shop best. A very tasteful collection of many different touristy, even useful gifts arranged according to the predominant colors Van Gogh used: yellow bags, red purses, blue ipad cased for example.
Another area for improvement is the locker room / hand in your coats etc.. Two lonely if busy bees tried to efficiently handle the crowds. From one line to the next: Security check point afterwards. If some bad guy wanted to do harm, he can easily hand in his bomb with his backpack in the locker room and not try to bring it through the scanners.
As the whole outing cost a bomb, I admit we were disappointed.
This picture was obviously taken on another day as it has practically no visitors and photography is forbidden!

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