Summer 2009
Summer 2009

160 years Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen

Saturday July 4 the museum celebrates it's 160th birthday and treats you with art and coffee.

The director of Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen takes pleasure in inviting you to celebrate the 160th anniversary of the museum on Saturday 4 July, when we will entertain you with a range of activities and openings. The day will end with a firework display by artist Ada Dispa.

160 years ago
Museum Boijmans opened its doors for the first time on Tuesday 3 July 1849. After 160 years we can look back on the fascinating development of this Rotterdam museum, which is one of the Netherlands’ most important museums of art. To a considerable extent the collections owe their size and quality to the private initiative that has always had a special significance in Rotterdam and flourishes to this day. The museum has two private collectors to thank for its name. In 1847 the Utrecht lawyer Frans Jacob Otto Boijmans bequeathed his art collection to the City of Rotterdam. This was the beginning of the museum. In 1958 the museum acquired the collection of the shipping magnate D.G. van Beuningen. This was such a milestone that the name of the museum was changed to Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen. There are many other private collectors to whom the museum owes much. Their different interests formed the basis of the collection’s diversity. And thanks to their nthusiasm the museum now is the only one in the Netherlands to hold paintings by Jan van Eyck, Titian, Hieronymus Bosch, Pieter Bruegel the Elder and Salvador Dalí. In the second half of the twentieth century the museum benefitted from the generosity of collectors. In 1981, for instance, thanks to Mr and Mrs Van Beuningende Vries, the museum acquired a sizeable collection of pre-industrial objects, and in 2005, with the aid of the H+F Patronage, it obtained a magnificent installation by the Danish artist Olafur Eliasson. This year, thanks to the generous gifts from private individuals, funds and a cultural lottery, the museum acquired the portrait of the Lütjens family by Max Beckmann.