Friday, June 8, 2012

Two Cities, Day 6: Amsterdam

Next stop was the Dutch Resistance Museum. It's a very nondescript building, I almost didn't notice the sign. It was amazing.

Verzetsmuseum: Dutch Resistance Museum

This camera's owner was incredible. His story is below. 

This is what I remember from the plaques on the walls (and some Googling). 

From the Verzetsmuseum online: 
Taking photographs was restricted during German occupation. Many subjects were considered undesirable by the Nazis. From the autumn of 1944, taking photographs in the street was completely prohibited. Thankfully, all these restrictions didn't stop a number of photographers recording wartime conditions....
Karel Bonnekamp (1914-2008) lived in Amsterdam during the war... From 1941 onwards, he was involved in adminstrative work for the Ordedienst (O.D.), a resistance organisation with many members from a military background....
Some photographers took their pictures through a hole in a bag, but Bonnekamp preferred to find a hidden spot and quickly take his pictures. In order to have something in his pocket that resembled a permit, he went to the German Security Service (SD) headquarters in Euterpestraat. On a visitors form he filled in the purpose of his visit: permission to take photographs in the streets. He carried this with him. When he was arrested while taking a photograph in 1943, he was released after simply producing this form. 
This was my favorite part about Karel. He just took a visitors form and bluffed his way out of an arrest! One day, he wanted to take pictures in a graveyard and a German soldier came up to him to confiscate the camera. The photographer immediately said, "Oh, I was just looking for someone to ask! Is it alright if I take photos here?" Although he'd already taken several. The soldier said it was prohibited and let him go on his way. 

This guy was amazing! Here are four of his photographs: 

Top Right: Valuation and confiscation of dogs, Olympic Stadium, July 1942. The Germans used dogs to walk in front of their troops through areas with landmines. They confiscated big dogs because it takes a certain amount of weight to set off the landmines. 
Bottom right: Confiscation of bicycles, Olympic Stadium, July 1942

Each of the following people were featured in the museum, along with many more. They had each done something amazing for the Dutch resistance.

At this point, the museum was closing so I had to race through the rest of it.

This is an old printer where they printed off pamphlets with information to resist the Nazis. 

Afterward, it was off to get a croquette with my I amsterdam card. Excellent food from a greasy spoon in a hidden side street.

Off to another museum! The Amsterdam Museum.


The garden inside the Amsterdam Museum. 

Promotional plate:
Blue-and-white porcelain was popular in the 17th century. The Dutch East India Company (VOC) imported and traded huge quantities of pottery from China and Japan. This plate was made in Japan, commissioned by the directors of the company in Batavia (today's Jakarta). In the centre of the plate is the VOC monogram, a contemporary form of marketing. 
c. 1850-74

Little dolls for grown-up ladies:
It looks like it was made for children, this dolls' house. Yet in the 18th century, dolls' houses were a hobby for adult women. Wealthy ladies assembled collections to show off how rich they were. There was plenty of ostentation in those days, but the dynamic Golden Age had passed. 
c. 1736-70

And on to the Bijbels Museum: the Cromhouthouses. It's a museum about the Bible! This is about the museum, from the pamphlet:
The Museum dates back to 1851, when rev. Leendert Schouten put his now world famous model of the Tabernacle - the ancient Israelite's portable sanctuary - on public display. This was the start of a rich and varied collection that still forms the heart of the Bijbels Musseum. 
This is a portrait of Jesus, attributed to Rembrandt and School, c. 1655. 

I didn't get a count, but there were well over a hundred different Bibles in the basement of this building. In all different languages. My guess was off, the pamphlet says there are about a thousand bibles on display. 

Free tea! But I bought the cheese cake, which was amazing and a sugar overdose. 

Then I went on to find Holland's pride and joy, Heineken Beer!

The Heineken Browery!

I got to try some of the ingredients of beer before they mixed it up into beer. 

The brewing vats (not sure what the real name is). 

Tried some beer before it was fully finished. Nast-a-last!

I love it, Heineken Horse Power above their horse barn. 

If you go to Amsterdam, you can't miss the Heineken Experience! So much fun! It's like a carnival for a few minutes. And you get about four free beers (after paying an entrance fee). The bartender taught that the reason the Dutch serve beer with a head of foam is not because they're "cheap Dutch bastards" (her words, not mine!), but because the beer keeps its fizz longer with the foam. The bubbles rise to the surface, but with the foam in the way, you don't end up with a flat beer as quickly as when the bubbles are released. Unfortunately, the foam is bitter because it's a concentration of the hops. So, instead of sipping beer like a girl, we were taught to gulp the beer, so you drink under the foam and don't get all the bitter foam. Didn't expect to learn how to 'taste' beer while in Europe, but it was pretty fun!

The I amsterdam sign was outside at the Museumplein.

Dinner at the Van Gogh museum. 
That's a donut, not a bagel, with my quiche. 

Van Gogh's self portrait.

I wanted a picture of me in the mirror, unfortunately this woman was not moving along!
The mirror frame is by Emile Bernard 1868-1941. 

Eugene Jansson (1862-1915)
Riddarfjarden, Stockholm, 1989

I have to admit that the other collections in the Van Gogh museum were more interesting than his works alone. Although, reading about his life was fascinating!

The monument at Dam Square. 

Such a wonderful day sightseeing!

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