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    Vincent van Gogh (1853-1890), View of Amsterdam from Central Station, 1885, On loan from the P. and N. de Boer Foundation, 2024.

    This view of Amsterdam from Central Station by Van Gogh is one of three works by the artist to go on display today at the Rijksmuseum. They are on long term loan from the P and N de Boer Foundation in Amsterdam. Van Gogh painted this view of Amsterdam while on his way to visit the Rijksmuseum, which had recently opened. From today, the loaned Van Gogh works –  Riverbank with Trees (1887) and Wheat Field (1888) – will hang together in the museum alongside his self-portrait from the Rijksmuseum collection. 

    After saving up for a long time, in October 1885 Van Gogh travelled from Nuenen to Amsterdam to visit the Rijksmuseum, which had only recently opened. He was very impressed by the paintings of Frans Hals – especially Militia Company of District XI – but was completely blown away by Rembrandt’s The Jewish Bride. Van Gogh described Rembrandt as a poet, writing: ‘[I would] gladly give up ten years of my life to sit in front of the painting for two weeks, eating only a stale crust of bread.’ Van Gogh had brought his painting materials with him to Amsterdam, and on the morning of his visit he applied just a few colours with rapid brushwork to capture the view of the Singel canal and the Cupola Church. This is one of only a few city views that Van Gogh painted in this period. 

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