Month: June 2015

Into the lion’s den with Rubens

The baroque painter Peter Paul Rubens was born on this day in 1577. Known as the ‘Prince of Painters’, and instantly recognisable for his grand, swirling style, his art now hangs in some of the greatest art galleries and most luxurious public buildings around the world. Self-portrait of Peter Paul Rubens. Rijksmuseum, Public Domain. If […]

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Join us in supporting VanGoYourself and Europeana Beacon

We often think of cultural heritage as paintings hung on a museum wall, or an impressive building in a foreign city. But nowadays, in this digital age with initiatives like VanGoYourself and Europeana Beacon, it takes lots of exciting new forms. Both projects use digital heritage material in surprising ways and at Europeana, we are […]

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St. John’s Dance – why can’t they stop dancing?

Today, Eastern Orthodox, Roman Catholics and Anglicans celebrate the birth of St. John the Baptist. But have you heard about St. John’s Dance? In 1374, on the streets of Aachen, Germany, people started dancing involuntarily. They moved frantically until near the point of total exhaustion. Within weeks this strange compulsion spread to the Netherlands and […]

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Treating the wounded of Waterloo – Sir Charles Bell and his art from the battlefields

On Sunday June 18 1815, the French emperor Napoleon Bonaparte was defeated during the Battle of Waterloo. Caving to a coalition of mainly British, Dutch and Prussian armies under the command of the Duke of Wellington, the defeat marked the end of one of the bloodiest battles in history. Left:Napoleon Bonaparte Aristide Louis. Amsterdam Museum, […]

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Doodling with a desperate sub-text

Europeana isn’t all ancient art and trench warfare. There’s modern stuff in the collections too. But because it’s recent, a lot of it is still in copyright, which means it can’t be easily shared in places like this blog. But here’s one gem of a collection that has been made available. Diary Drawings Day 1 […]

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Marketing modern art at 31 Rue Bonaparte

Nowadays, we’re used to billboards and posters advertising the latest exhibitions on the sides of buses and busy street corners. Art is big business so it’s only natural it’s got a publicity budget to match. In fact, art posters can even become valuable collectables, fetching huge sums at auction houses around the world. All of […]

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Homes for tiny people: 18 beautiful doll’s houses

As a child in 1980s Britain, several books and TV shows captured my imagination with their little people and tiny houses. Bagpuss. Tottie – the Story of a Doll’s House. And my very favourite, The Borrowers. Imagine being so small, the whole world being so big. I imagined these people existed, under my floorboards, amongst […]

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