Saturday, 9 July 2016

Exhibition, Catherine the Great in Amsterdam

Bust of Catherine
Catherine the Great was not always the great empress of Russia. When she was born in 1729, she was a German princess and not really important.

This changed when she married Peter, the heir of the Russian throne in 1744. The marriage was not happy and when Peter was crowned in 1761, Catherine took the crown for herself.

She was known for her love for young men, her intelligence, her interest in Enlightenment and she corresponded with Voltaire for years. She also loved art and it was because of her that the artcollection of the Hermitage in Sint Petersburg began.

In the Hermitage in Amsterdam there is an exhibition about this formidable empress, Catherine the Greatest. What I love is that the exhibition is not just paintings, but there is also furniture and even her desk can be seen.
Her desk. The bust on the left is a portrait of Voltaire. 
There are also clothes and jewelry and even a replica of the crown she was crowned with (the real one cannot leave Russia). I could not get a good picture of that, but believe me, it was beautiful.

There were also paintings, snuffboxes and other things she used.
Her sewingbox.
Imagine her sowing on a button or something like that. :-) 

Detail of the handle of a small riffle
that belonged to her grandchild
I liked the different portraits and how they showed the changes in the Empress. From a young girl who came to Russia and who had to change her religion and her name, to a woman who knew what she wanted and reigned well.
A young princess

Catherine the Empress
It was a very divers and hugely interesting exhibition and I really enjoyed myself. It can be seen in Amsterdam until January 15th 2017, so if you happen to come to Amsterdam in the coming months, do not hesitate to visit The Hermitage for this wonderful exhibition!

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