At the Rijksmuseum, art and history take on new meaning for a broad-based, contemporary national and international audience.
As a national institute, the Rijksmuseum offers a representative overview of Dutch art and history from the Middle Ages onwards. We also offer a overview of major aspects of European and Asian art.
The Rijksmuseum keeps, manages, conserves, restores, researches, prepares, collects, publishes, and presents artistic and historical objects, both on its own premises and elsewhere.
More than three years after the birth of the Batavian Republic, the government decided to honour a suggestion put forward by Isaac Gogel. They followed the French example of setting up a national museum. The museum initially housed the remains of the viceregal collections and a variety of objects originating from state institutions. When the Nationale Kunstgalerij first opened its doors, it had more than 200 paintings and historical objects on display. In the years that followed, Gogel and the first director, C.S. Roos, made countless acquisitions. Their first purchase, The Swan by Jan Asselijn, cost 100 Dutch guilders and is still one of the Rijksmuseum’s top pieces.