Mauritshuis – The Hague
The Mauritshuis is an art museum in The Hague, The Netherlands, particularly renowned for its collection of 17th century paintings from the so-called Dutch Golden Age.
History and buildings
Founded in the 18th century by Prince William V, the collection is housed since 1822 in the Mauritshuis, a Classicist style building close to the Dutch Parliament.
The construction which accommodates the museum today was completed in 1641 after a design by architects Jacob van Campen and Pieter Post. The building was commissioned by nobleman Johan Maurits van Nassau-Siegen, from whom it takes its name, as his private residence.
Between 2012 and 2014, the home of the Mauritshuis underwent a major renovation and expansion project after a design by Hans van Heeswijk architects, which included the incorporation of an adjacent palace, the former Sociëteit de Witte, into the its premises, and the construction of a new underground foyer which connects the two museum buildings, located on the opposite sides of Korte Vijverberg street.
Exterior view of the Mauritshuis in The Hague; photo by Ronald Tilleman, courtesy of Mauritshuis
A section drawing showing the new underground foyer of the museum
As mentioned, the Mauritshuis museum is particularly renowned for its painting collection, which comprises masterpieces by artists from the Dutch Golden Age – including Joannes Vermeer, Rembrandt van Rijn, Carel Fabritius, Jan Steen, and Paulus Potter -, as well as by other Dutch and European painters such as Hans Holbein the Younger, Jan Brueghel the Elder, Peter Paul Rubens, and Anthony van Dick
Most iconic works on view include Girl with a Pearl Earring by Vermeer (c. 1665), The Anatomy Lesson of Dr Nicolaes Tulp (1632), and Self-portrait (1669) by Rembrandt, The Bull by Potter (1647), and Fabritius’ The Goldfinch (1654).
Special events and programs
The Mauritshuis also hosts temporary exhibitions, mostly focused on Old Masters’ art, educational programs, and special events. The museum includes a Dutch-style brasserie, and a gift shop.
Photograph: Eelco de Jong
Pieter Post, Front Facade of the Mauritshuis, 1652. The Hague, National Library
Exterior, and interior views of the Mauritshuis; photos by Ronald Tilleman, courtesy of Mauritshuis
Photograph by Ivo Hoekstra, courtesy of Mauritshuis
Rembrandt van Rijn, The Anatomy Lesson of Dr Nicolaes Tulp,1632, oil on canvas; Mauritshuis, The Hague
Carel Fabritius, The Goldfinch, 1654. oil on panel; Mauritshuis, The Hague
Cover Image: Johannes Vermeer. Girl with a Pearl Earring (detail), c. 1665, oil on canvas ; Mauritshuis, The Hague