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27-February-2015

Spanish Masters in Amsterdam

The ‘Spanish Masters from the Hermitage. The world of El Greco, Ribera, Zurbarán, Velázquez, Murillo & Goya’ exhibition can be admired in the Hermitage until 29 May. This exhibition draws attention to the broader context of painting in the Spanish Golden Century (second half of the sixteenth and the seventeenth century) and the echoes and continuation in subsequent centuries.

Spanish masterpieces were created during the reign of Philip II, the absolute monarch of a colonial empire who enforced strict rules for Catholic paintings. The period that followed was dominated by artists including Francisco de Zurbáran, also known as the Spanish Caravaggio.

A great many aspects of Spanish history are highlighted in this collection, such as the horrors of Napoleon’s conquest in 1808, bullfighting and Mediterranean pub life. The variation of the exhibition is also expressed in the alternation of Spanish painting styles: Baroque, Rococo, dramatic realism and spiritual minimalism.

Wertheimpark

This little park lies beside one of Amsterdam’s prettiest canals. Its gentle sloping waterfront makes it an excellent spot for canal side lazing. In fact it’s the only stretch of canal in the whole of the city centre that has a park next to it. On summer days you’ll find loads of people sitting at the water’s edge, having a picknick or reading a book. Added bonus are the bigger ships passing by on their way from the Amstel to the IJ. Especially on weekdays you’ll see many of them.

Canal boats are an excellent way to discover the city. Check Getting Around for more info.

Tip

The park's canal side is definitely the best place in the whole of Amsterdam to enjoy late afternoon or early evening sunshine.