Author Archives: Hans Langh

About Hans Langh

Not born in Amsterdam but well educated in Holland's south. A master's degree at the Academy of visual arts, Breda, Netherlands. There after additional courses at Hochschule der Künste HdK Berlin Fachbereich 4 Visuelle Kommunikation. Worked as a visualizer for Shell Research Lab in Amsterdam and DTP for several prepress and advertising agencies. More information on my LinkedIn pages. Career switch into tourism, both driver and guide. Tour Leader van Nood reizen, Lovers Canal Cruise Company and Great Amsterdam Excursions Company at Amsterdam Airport Schiphol. Paris, Berlin and Amsterdam I know like the inside of my pocket.

NDSM area Amsterdam

festival seen from above at ndsm wharf amsterdam

The former shipyard NDSM (Nederlandsche Dok en Scheepsbouw Maatschappij), is an absolute creativity hotspot. Many artists studios, start-ups, concerts and activities.
In the 1970s, the shipbuilding industry in Amsterdam North disappeared. A desolate industrial landscape of 32 hectares was left behind.
Now NDSM area Amsterdam is a breeding ground for creative companies in the fields of visual arts, design, theatre, film, media and architecture.

Muiderslot Castle Amsterdam

Muiderslot castle amsterdam surrounded by water and gardens

The Muiderslot Castle Amsterdam is a beautiful castle, and it is also beautifully situated on the river Vecht and the former Zuiderzee. Because of its location on the river Vecht, Floris V, Count of Zeeland and Holland, was able to collect tolls.
In the golden age, the owner and poet P.C. Hooft, the ‘Dutch Shakespeare’, made the castle into an intellectual artistic center. The writer received here many prominent men of literature, artists and scientists.
It is also part of the ‘Hollandse Nieuwe Waterlinie’, which is on the UNESCO World Heritage List.
It is massively built like a square medieval castle with a tower on each corner. With a moat and bridge it is very impressive. The 700-year-old castle is one of the best-preserved ones in the Netherlands.
Muiderslot is more than just a castle. The old castle is surrounded by water and greenery. The herb garden and vegetable garden are very worthwhile to visit.

Haarlemmermeer Polder

the pumping station and ring canal of haarlemmermeer polder seen from above haarlemmermeer polder

The Haarlemmermeer was created after many storms around 1500 merged a number of lakes.
It was a rough environment and the lake was nicknamed ‘Water Wolf’.
Reclamation work started in 1840. Originally the plan was to do this with 200 windmills, but the invention of the steam engine allowed the job to be done with three ultramodern steam pumping stations.
The enormous Cruqius steam pumping station is one of the most impressive industrial monuments in Europe and still works.
The cylinder has a diameter of more than 3.50 meters. The pistons drive eight external balance arms. With each piston stroke, 64,000 liters of water were pumped out of the lake.
Abbenes and Lisserbroek were islands before the reclamation and are now pieces of old land in the polder.
The Haarlemmermeer is also part of the Defense Line of Amsterdam. The 60 kilometer long ring canal is divided in two by the Geniedijk. A military structure that had to protect Amsterdam by inundation.

Frans Hals Museum Haarlem

garden of the frans hals museum haarlem

Frans Hals Museum Haarlem has the largest collection of Frans Hals paintings in the world.
It is a former ‘old men’s house’ built in 1608.
There are fourteen paintings of his hand on display, including his famous civic guard paintings.
Due to religious persecution during the Eighty Years’ War, Frans Hals came to Haarlem as one of the many Flemish refugees.
Frans Hals (1582-1666) became one of the most famous portrait painters of his time. Among his greatest works are the portraits of the militia’s, similar to Rembrandt’s works.
He was able to suggest movement and detail with a single, rough stroke of the brush, and because of his special use of colors. He is sometimes referred to as ‘the first impressionist’. Vincent van Gogh admired his modernist style.