|Central Train Station|
We just got back from our whirlwind trip to Amsterdam. I wondered when we went if it would be worth the jet lag to do such a short trip, but I have to say that seeing the Rembrandt, Vermeer, Hals, and Van Gogh paintings in person was well worth the effort.
I liked that the museums we went to made the effort to put the history of the country and the history of the various artists work in context. Nothing is created in a vacuum, although it sometimes seems that way when all I have seen were the great masterpieces in my textbook in college.
The Van Gogh museum where they had many of Vincent's early paintings showing his learning process and how hard he worked before he even came to his famous style was particularly important to me. I was also moved by how he didn't realize that he was doing the very thing he was trying to accomplish, but he couldn't see it! He despaired and desiring not to be a burden to his brother anymore, he took his own life. How often have I felt that all my efforts are not amounting to anything! Sometimes it is so hard to judge when you are in the middle of things. If Van Gogh could have just held on ten more years, he would have started to see the interest in his work begin to blossom.
This is only one of the many things I felt I learned on such a short trip. I have to say, that there is nothing like experiencing and seeing the world for myself and not just seeing it on t.v. on the travel channel.
Jeff's Corner: Standing at Rembrandt's easel in his studio was amazing!