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On the Amsel (On the Ij)

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On the Amsel (On the Ij) About 1885


Maris paid his first visit to Amsterdam shortly after he returned to Holland from Paris. He seems to have been fascinated by views of the buildings along the river, and how they reflected in the water. During this period, Amsterdam was undergoing major transformations: old canals were filled in to create streets, bridges were lowered to accommodate the new trams, and the view of the cityscape from the river was being destroyed by the building of the new Central Railway Station (1882-1889), which cut the city off from the open water. Maris was notorious for his casual approach to topographical accuracy, however he seems to have deliberately ignored the encroachment of modern life on the city, and focused instead on a more peaceful and nostalgic view of the older buildings.


  • Acc. No. NG 1049
  • Medium Oil on canvas
  • Size 94.00 x 125.40 cm (framed: 168.30 x 135.60 x 16.50 cm)
  • Credit Bequest of Hugh A. Laird 1911