Amsterdam art amazes pupils

Artists in Fourth and Fifth Year immersed themselves in Dutch culture as they visited the galleries of Amsterdam during February half term.

Accompanied by Head of Art Mr Richard Davies and Mrs Helen Tadman, the pupils visited the Rijksmuseum, the Van Gogh Museum, the CoBrA Museum, the Stedelijk and the Moco Museum over three days. Whilst in the bustling city, they also had the opportunity to explore the canals and the flea markets.

Among the many highlights, the opportunity to see masterpieces by Rembrandt (The Night Watch), Vermeer (The Milkmaid) and Van Gogh (Sunflowers) were particularly notable and offered a marked contrast to the contemporary work on display in The Stedelijk from artists such as those associated with the De Stijl movement, as well as examples from the American avant-garde including Barbara Kruger, Keith Haring and John Chamberlain.

The less famous CoBrA Museum required a tram to be taken out from the centre, but it proved an excellent introduction to more abstract and conceptual ideas that were developing midway through the 20th century.

The importance of being able to examine work in a gallery setting is invaluable and plenty of sketching, note taking and discussion were undertaken.

Mr Davies said: “While the trip will have made a lasting impression on the pupils, as a teacher, the time spent discussing art with the pupils was both rewarding and enriching. The enthusiasm shown by the boys and girls made the experience all the more enjoyable.”

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