The Rembrandthuis Museum is based in the former Amsterdam home and workshop of the famous 17th century Dutch painter Rembrandt van Rijn.
The building was originally constructed in 1606, coincidentally the same year Rembrandt was born. Rembrandt worked and lived there after he bought it in 1639 during a period of financial success and affluence.
The space has been furnished and decorated to recreate it's state during Rembrandt's occupancy, according to an authentic 17th century inventory. Rembrandt's workshop, kitchen and living room can be visited to get an impression of the daily life of the famous Dutch master painter, and 17th century Amsterdam citizenry in general.
The museum also possesses a vast collection of Rembrandt's etches and sketches and regularly organizes exhibitions about Rembrandt, his students, teachers and contemporary artists.
Rembrandt in Amsterdam
Rembrandt was born and raised in the city of Leiden, where after a short period as a student at the University of Leiden he decided he'd rather pursue a career in painting.
Rembrandt studied painting under various teachers in Leiden and eventually in Amsterdam. After he'd achieved considerable success in Leiden, Rembrandt decided to move permanently to Amsterdam in 1831 at 25 years of age. In Amsterdam he was admitted to the painters guild in in 1634, and married the affluent Saskia van Uylenburgh in that same year. With Saskia he moved into the building currently housing the museum in 1639, where he would spend the next twenty years.
Rembrandt met with quite some tragedy whilst living at this address. Of the four children born to him and Saskia, only one would survive into adulthood. Tragically Saskia herself died from tuberculosis in 1642, shortly after Rembrandt had finished painting the now world famous Nachtwacht painting.
Rembrandt was one of the best paid painters in the city, and also inherited a large sum of money after Saskia's passing away. Still his financial fortunes eventually proved to be no match for his collector's frenzy at buying art and curiosities at auctions, markets and shops in the bustling 17th century trade center of Amsterdam. Eventually he was unable to pay off the loans for his house. The house was auctioned off in 1658. It wouldn't be until 1911 that it was opened as a museum celebrating Rembrandt's work and life.
Rembrandt lived and painted the rest of his years in a small modest rented accommodation at the Rozengracht 184.