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The museum collects a wide spectrum of art: it covers both topical matter and things from the past, both visual art and applied art. The museum does not do this alone: the contributions from various foundations and from sponsors and other patrons (such as donors and lenders) are indispensable for implementing an active collection policy. For these reasons, the museum does much of its collecting in dialogue with others - artists, collectors, foundations, sponsors etc.
For purchases, donations and extended loans, the guiding principle is that a new acquisition must have ‘gallery quality’. Another principle is that in the area of prints and drawings, we should not collect just highlights, but also collect in the breadth. More than the other areas of collection, this section also has a study element, particularly since works on paper can only be rarely exhibited because of their vulnerability.
In recent years, the works of Yves Tanguy (acquisition 2007), Joseph Cornell (acquisition 2008) and Max Beckman (acquisition 2009 and 1010) have satisfied major wishes in the field of classic modern art, while the purchase of works by Claes Oldenburg, Tom Wesselman and James Rosenquist has substantially strengthened the pop art collection (acquisition 2006). Acquisitions in the field of contemporary art in 2009 included the installations ‘Let down your hair’ by Piplotti Rist and ‘Apollo’ by Olaf Nicolai commissioned by the museum itself. The group of drawings by Hans Bol acquired in 2005 enriched the collection of draughtsmanship, while 2010 started very well for the print collection, because, thanks to fundraising, the series ‘Landsknecht and Turks’ (43 German sixteenth-century prints, the majority coloured) could be purchased. The most high profile acquisition in 2010 was without doubt the Peanut Butter Floor by Wim T. Schippers, dating from 1962. In the field of contemporary art and design, works by Ryan Gander, Gabriel Lester, Yayoi Kusama, Hella Jongerius, Wieki Somers, Bert Jan Pot and others were acquired in 2010 .