In the times of isolation, finding solace in art works can be quite rewarding. This was the idea guiding Amsterdam’s renowned Rijksmuseum in doubling its collection of art works which it makes available for free online. The number of digitized artworks is now at 709,622.
It seems that the times of isolation was one of the guiding principles behind the recent set of digitized works that includes the works made in similar harsh times by such masters as Rembrandt and Vermeer.
“In this time of forced isolation,” says Friso Lammertse, curator of 17th-century Dutch painting at the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, Vermeer’s work “can point us at the fact that extreme beauty can be found just in our room.” The Rijksmuseum hasn’t just recommended art in our current state of isolation, but it has also doubled its collection of free, high resolution works online, by Rembrandt, Vermeer, and a host of other artists who used art to cope with loss and isolation during the plagues of their times.
As Open Culture notes, The museum has promised, “We bring the museum to you,” and they have delivered not only with their extensive digital collection – free for downloading, sharing, and editing with a free Rijksmuseum account – but also with informative series on their website. Art is essential in the best and worst of times, and especially now, when it shows us how to look closely at ourselves and our surroundings, and treat our lives with care and attention. Enter the Rijksmuseum online collections here.