Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen has one of the world's most important collections of early Netherlandish drawings, numbering some 400 sheets. A selection of approximately 140 drawings were shown in three displays in the Print Room gallery, each lasting three months.
The drawings were made by Dutch and Flemish artists born before 1581. Many of them came from the collections of Frans Boijmans (acquired in 1847) and Franz Koenigs (acquired in 1940). Others were purchased in recent decades; two were acquired very recently.
All 400 early Netherlandish drawings are published in an online catalogue on the museum's website. More than 140 of them have been selected for the exhibition 'Bosch to Bloemaert: Early Netherlandish Drawings' in Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, which was shown in the spring of 2014 at the Fondation Custodia in Paris and was on display in Rotterdam. In 2017 the exhibition will travel to the National Gallery of Art in Washington.
Each of the three parts of the exhibition was a more or less chronological presentation of drawings by famous artists such as Pieter Bruegel, Hans Bol, Hendrick Goltzius, Jacques de Gheyn and Abraham Bloemaert, as well as lesser-know artists. Two rare drawings by Jheronimus Bosch were included in the first two parts. Each part included a variety of genres, such as landscapes, portraits, biblical, historical and mythological scenes, and drawings with varied functions, including preparatory studies for paintings, designs for prints and drawings made as artworks in their own right.