Museum Volkenkunde, Leiden

Museum Volkenkunde, Leiden Museum Volkenkunde, Leiden

The collection of the Museum Volkenkunde, Leiden (the Netherlands) is for a large part based on the Koninklijk Kabinet van Zeldzaamheden (‘the Royal Cabinet of Rarities’), which was established in 1816 in The Hague, the Netherlands. The Kabinet was in its turn built on a general royal collection of objects and a private collection of Chinese artefacts. The Kabinet closed in 1883 and its collection was moved to Leiden.

In the meantime, in 1832, Philipp Franz von Siebold had come to Leiden and brought with him a large collection of Japanese items (many of these items are now housed in the SieboldHuis, Leiden). The collection was expanded by the purchase of various small collections in the 1830's and used to create the Rijks Japansch Museum van Siebold, which in 1864 was renamed the 's Rijks Ethnographisch Museum, and in 1883 the collection was augmented with the objects from the Royal Cabinet in The Hague.

In 1935 the Museum, now named the Rijksmuseum voor Volkenkunde ('National Museum of Ethnography'), moved into its present premises, a former academic hospital along the Steenstraat in Leiden. By the end of the twentieth century the museum had a vast collection of items from all over the world. It was estimated that up to 20% of the collection consist of textiles or textile related items. These include a wide range of garments, woven and non-woven textiles, as well as decorative needlework of many forms, such as beadwork from Greenland.

In 2014 the Museum, which since 2005 was called the Museum Volkenkunde, was merged with the Tropenmuseum (Amsterdam; est. 1864) and the Afrika Museum (est. 1954, Berg en Dal), to create the National Museum of World Cultures (1st April 2014). In 2017, the National Museum of World Cultures started working closely with the World Museum in Rotterdam.

Address: Museum Volkenkunde, Steenstraat 1, Leiden, The Netherlands

Website of the museum.

Digital source of illustration (retrieved 19th June 2016).


Last modified on Wednesday, 20 September 2017 09:40