Sunday, 21 December 2014


Here are some pics from last week of random things in the Amsterdam Rijkmuseum that amused me for various reasons (some of them silly, yeah okay!).

This was the closest I got to Rembrandt's The Night Watch. I know what I like ... and this is nothing special, seriously.

I do like medieval art:

Mary Magdalene, Carlo Crivelli, c. 1480

Depictions of St. Mary Magdalene are usually cool because she was an ex Fallen Woman and therefore that gave one an excuse to own a painting of a HOT BABE, in fashionable/sexy clothes, and still be pious. This one is particularly lecherous-looking, and her clothes are sumptuous.

Okay, this one is surreal. A medieval heraldic lady with antlers for legs that you hang off the ceiling. Because ... No, actually I have no idea on this one. Back to art that makes a bit more sense:

Detail, Four Canons Regular of St. Augustine meditating at an open grave , Master of the Spes Nostra, 1500

I like corpse pictures, okay. This corpse is the centre of attention in the painting.

Detail, Saul and the Witch of Endor by Jacob Cornelisz van Oostsanen, 1526
This picture is full of witches, satyrs and demons in various crazy forms. And giant owls. The full pic is well worth a look!

Detail, The Fall of Man, Cornelis Cornelisz. van Haarlem 1592
I like the fact that the painter here has had an imaginative shot at God Almighty himself, depicted as a cloud man with face and hands.

This picture (a detail of a church scene) is meant to be funny - the painter included a full-sized tromp-l'oeil fly on the woman's bonnet, to fool viewers into thinking one had landed on the picture :-) (Also there is an owlet on the other woman's head. What is it with the owls, you Dutch?)

Shiva's very fine bum. No further explanation required.

Detail, Landscape with an Episode from the Conquest of America , Jan Mostaert, c. 1535
Finally, a real oddity. The full picture shows the Spanish turning up to massacre Native Americans (depicted as naked Dutchmen because the artist had no clue whatsoever what they should look like). What I really want to know is why two of them - and only two - have bright red Santa Claus hats on...?

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