Selling the Golden Age


The Dutch Golden Age has produced an enormous amount of art works, paintings, drawings, prints, etc. Nowadays, most of these works can be admired in public museums. In the past decades, much research has been done on the critical fortune of these works and on the development of public taste as related to the formation of national and local museums, mainly in the 19th and 20th centuries. Much less energy has been spent, however, on the way these works of art were treated and looked upon between the waning of the Golden Age (c. 1670) and the foundation of the first institutional museums around 1800. Already the late 17th century witnessed the start-off of an ever more nervous process of buying and selling by private dealers and in public auction, in Amsterdam, Paris and London. While the French art market in the 18th century has been thoroughly researched during the last few years, very little is known of the workings of the Dutch market. To develop a research project in this field, a core consortium has been formed, in which Christie?s Nederland, the Rijksbureau voor Kunsthistorische Documentatie, and the University of Amsterdam participate. The main objectives of the present proposal are to explore the availability of relevant sources (auction catalogues, archival sources), to ensure contributions from a larger group of relevant parties (e.g. Getty Institute, Frick Library, Bibliothèque Nationale, Rijksmuseum) and to formulate a proposal for funding, including ways to make relevant data available to public and private parties.


Chapter in book

  • F Grijzenhout, M Rijnders, J Rutgers(2014): Rembrandt in perspectief. pp. 275 - 301 , Zwolle
  • (2014): Rembrandt in perspectief. De veranderende visie op de meester en zijn werk , Zwolle

Scientific article

  • F Grijzenhout, I Jonkhoff, M Kramer, D.L. de Bruijne(2014): Frans Hals in mennonitischen Brauerkreisen. Jahrbuch Wallraf-Richartz Museum pp. 254 - 266
  • F Grijzenhout(2015): Frans Hals. Maandblad Amstelodamum pp. 14 - 29
  • F Grijzenhout(2015): Between memory and amnesia. Journal of the Historians of Netherlandish Art pp. 1 - 12


Project number


Main applicant

Prof. dr. F. Grijzenhout

Affiliated with

Universiteit van Amsterdam, Faculteit der Geesteswetenschappen, Kunst- en Cultuurwetenschappen


01/09/2014 to 01/09/2015