We spent the day at the beautiful medieval city of Haarlem in the Netherlands and visited the FransH

"Haarlem (Dutch pronunciation: [ˈɦaːrlɛm]; predecessor of Harlem in the English language) is a city and municipality in the Netherlands. It is the capital of the province of North Holland and is situated at the northern edge of the Randstad, one of the most populated metropolitan areas in Europe. Haarlem had a population of 159,556 in 2017.

Haarlem was granted city status or stadsrechten in 1245, although the first city walls were not built until 1270. The modern city encompasses the former municipality of Schoten as well as parts that previously belonged to Bloemendaal and Heemstede. Apart from the city, the municipality of Haarlem also includes the western part of the village of Spaarndam. Newer sections of Spaarndam lie within the neighbouring municipality of Haarlemmermeer." https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Haarlem

"With its ancient buildings, cobbled streets and winding waterways, the medieval city of Haarlem is one of the most photogenic destinations in the Netherlands. Easily reachable by train (just fifteen minutes from Amsterdam Central Station) Haarlem is often referred to as a scaled-down version of its more famous neighbour. But to think of it in such terms does a disservice to a city that beats with its own vibrant pulse and overflows with a rich history, epoch-spanning architecture and a thriving cultural scene all of its own." https://www.iamsterdam.com/en/plan-your-trip/day-trips/haarlem/haarlem-top-10
"Harlem, Manhattan

In 1658, Peter Stuyvesant, the Director-General of the Dutch colony of Nieuw Nederland (New Netherland), founded the settlement of Nieuw Haarlem in the northern part of Manhattan Island as an outpost of Nieuw Amsterdam (New Amsterdam) at the southern tip of the island. After the English capture of New Netherland in 1664, the new English colonial administration renamed both the colony and its principal city "New York," but left the name of Haarlem more or less unchanged. The spelling changed to Harlem in keeping with contemporary English usage, and the district grew (as part of the borough of Manhattan) into the vibrant centre of African American culture in New York City and the United States generally by the 20th century." https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Haarlem#Harlem,_Manhattan

"The Frans Hals Museum is ...

…a happy marriage of two collections. They say that opposites attract, and that has certainly happened at the Frans Hals Museum, where you’ll find two opposing poles when it comes to the worlds of art. First, there’s the internationally renowned collection of 17th-century art from Haarlem, the birthplace of Dutch painting from the Golden Age – with Frans Hals as pater familias. Alongside that, there’s the collection of contemporary art from the 20th and 21st centuries, with a focus on cutting-edge work by leading contemporary artists. These two collections are partners with their own clear identity that are intimately linked as interconnected vessels. They are two flints that are struck against each other and give rise to new meaning.

…a museum of the human dimension. A small house for Great Masters. Accessible in all respects, in an intuitive human way. The Frans Hals Museum is, as curator Lex ter Braak once said, “not cathedral, but a chapel”. It is ‘one museum at two locations’: The Hof location is homely and intimate; it’s a building with its own history linked to that of the museum’s ‘House Master’ Frans Hals. And a stone’s throw from Hof ​​is the Hal location. Situated on Grote Markt, the historical heart of Haarlem, it is an architectural patchwork of three monumental buildings from different time periods, with the 17th-century Vleeshal (‘Meat Hall’) as the centrepiece and traditionally a place where people gathered.

…a knowledge centre. In addition to being an archive and exhibition centre, the museum is also a knowledge centre. It displays art but, behind the scenes, it also carries out a great deal of research into art. What does that mean in our case, in particular? That the Frans Hals Museum will also become a centre of expertise on Hals himself. Just like with the Van Gogh Museum, which is the world’s centre of knowledge on Vincent van Gogh. The Frans Hals museum wants to be a ‘hub’ that stimulates and boosts the oeuvre research on Hals. At the same time, the museum functions as a place where, in collaboration with partners, careful thought and consideration is given to history and the future, and the how and why of ‘transhistorical curating’ (combining art from various periods, contexts and movements.

…a meeting centre. A meeting place where different art forms, ideas and visitors meet, cross and overlap: tourists and students, old and new, brushstrokes and pixels, serious exploration and playful fun. These encounters encourage you to look differently, discover things and thereby see more.

…as innovative as Frans Hals! A vibrant place with exciting and progressive programming that offers three angles: old art, contemporary art and a stimulating mix of both. Presented in an innovative form where attention to closer inspection (visual literacy) is combined with a visitor’s active attitude." https://www.franshalsmuseum.nl/en/discover/about/

"Saint Bavo Cathedral (Grote of St. Bavokerk)

Haarlem’s impressive gothic St. Bavo’s Cathedral was built in the 14th-15th centuries, in the so-called Kunstgotiek (“Coast Gothic”) style. A treasure chamber containing religous artifacts is located in St Bavo’s cathedral’s annexe. https://visithaarlem.org/sightssounds

"The Cathedral of Saint Bavo is a cathedral in Haarlem, the Netherlands, built by Joseph Cuypers from 1895 to 1930 to replace the former waterstaatskerk in the Jansstraat called the St. Joseph. That church was itself a replacement for the Sint-Bavokerk, that had been converted to Protestantism from Catholicism in 1578. The Cathedral of Saint Bavo now serves as the main cathedral for the Roman Catholic Diocese of Haarlem-Amsterdam. Within the Cathedral, the former sacristy has been converted into a small museum (schatkamer) containing historical artefacts from Haarlem's Catholic past." https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cathedral_of_St_Bavo,_Haarlem

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