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Rijksmuseum new Philips Wing opens with first showing of 20th century photography collection
Squatting Girl/Spider Girl, Helen Levitt (1913–2009), Chromogenic print, New York, 1980, Collection Rijksmuseum, purchased with the support of Baker & McKenzie Amsterdam N.V.



AMSTERDAM.- Running from 1 November 2014 – 11 January 2015, 'Modern Times. Photography in the 20th Century' is the Rijksmuseum’s first ever photography exhibition to showcase the outstanding collection of 20,000 20th-century works that it has amassed since deciding in 1994 to extend its photographic holdings beyond the 19th century.

In a display of more than 400 images, the exhibition traces photography’s key developments during the 20th century, including the introduction of colour, the growth of documentary and news photography, and photography as a pure art form. A wide-ranging overview, it also explores photography’s role in fashion and advertising and features some amateur works.

Rare photographs by Brassaď, Ed van der Elsken, John Gutmann, Lewis Hine, William Klein, Jacques-Henri Lartigue, Joel Meyerowitz, László Moholy-Nagy, Eadweard Muybridge, Man Ray and W. Eugene Smith are being displayed as part of the exhibition Modern Times. Photography in the 20th Century. This major photographic survey inaugurates the Rijksmuseum’s newly renovated Philips Wing, the final stage in the museum’s recent acclaimed transformation.

The Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam is the Netherlands national museum dedicated to arts and history. The Museum’s Philips Wing, newly renovated by Spanish architects Cruz y Ortiz, opened its doors for the first time on 1 November 2014 with the launch of Modern Times. Photography in the 20th Century, the inaugural exhibition, which occupies all nine of the Wing’s new exhibition rooms.

From Muybridge to Sassen
Modern Times ranges over the whole of the 20th century, and also spans the decades on either side. The earliest images are Eadweard Muybridge’s motion studies, including a galloping horse from 1887, and George Hendrik Breitner’s early photographs. The exhibition’s most recent works were shot in Suriname in 2013 by the exciting Dutch photographer Viviane Sassen. Among the rarest masterpieces are photographs by John Gutmann (Olympic diver), László Moholy-Nagy (Pont Transbordeur), Man Ray’s Peggy Guggenheim, Lartigue’s early photographs of home-made aeroplanes and Joel Meyerowitz’s Moon Launch.

Vintage
Modern Times. Photography in the 20th Century is the Rijksmuseum’s first major presentation to the public of the 20th-century photography collection that it has amassed over the past two decades. During that time the collection has earned international acclaim, both for its range and depth. It is especially remarkable for its large number of original vintage prints, which are often extremely rare. In many cases, the Rijksmuseum holds the only original print known to exist of an image, or that is, at the very most, one of just a few.

Development of the 20th-century photographic collection
The Rijksmuseum has assembled an international collection of 20,000 20th-century photographs since it began updating its collection of 19th-century photography in 1994. The Rijksmuseum’s total photography collection comprises more than 130,000 photos. The exhibition Modern Times is the sequel to the large-scale retrospective exhibition in 1996: A New Art. Photography in the 19th Century.










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November 3, 2014

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