Orphan masters and executions

Today’s little entry in the cabinet of curiosities comes from the royal palace in Amsterdam. The palace squats at the edge of the Dam – the large central plein of Amsterdam. It was built in the mid-seventeenth century as a town hall, and its history as a centre of bureaucracy … Continue reading

Author : nike

Surprise! You’ve got mail

At the risk of being terribly self-centred, today’s object is not one I discovered in a museum, street or gallery. Instead, it arrived by post from the United Kingdom. A box of books. My books. Not just books I own, but books I wrote. I wonder if there any moments … Continue reading

Author : nike
Comments : 4 Comments

Natura Artis Magistra

Natura Artis Magistra, founded in 1838, is a miniature zoo in the heart of Amsterdam’s Plantage district. It includes an aquarium, butterfly pavilion, planetarium and various other animal exhibits. The zoo is also the site of a range of beautiful old buildings, including Wolf House, which was once The Oak … Continue reading

Filed under : On Living
Author : nike


It’s surprisingly difficult to get good food in Amsterdam. There are oodles of cafes and coffee shops, but the cafes often aren’t really focused on food (but booze and coffee), whereas coffee shops are often places that serve coffee, but are mostly famous for serving various types of cannabis. Gartine … Continue reading

Filed under : On Food , On Living
Author : nike

Diane Arbus / the space between

The foam photography museum is on the Keizersgracht in Amsterdam. Recently, I went there to see an exhibition of photography by Diane Arbus, the American photographer. The exhibition is laid out over several floors, with narrow stairways leading up and down between rooms. This is not a museum for anyone … Continue reading

Author : nike
Comments : 2 Comments