Lecture Series - Dutch Golden Age

The Introduction to the lecture series

Tomorrow 13 February 2020, starts the six part lecture series about the Dutch Golden Age at Museum Voorschoten

Tascha Sciarone writing and drinking coffee in a white blouse and skirt.

Tascha Sciarone - writing and having coffee

I am Tascha Sciarone, better known here at the gallery as the eldest sister of the sisters Sciarone and the gallery manager. I also have a Masters Degree in Art History, from Leiden University. Where I specialised in Museums and Collections. That is, I immerse myself in how museums present their collections.


Museum Voorschoten is our lecture hall and together with historian Huub Breur from Amsterdam University and artist Afsaneh Taghevi we have prepared a lecture series about the Dutch Golden Age. We decided on this topic, because 2019 was a big year for Rembrandt, but also the year that Amsterdam Museum created a minor political and cultural stir, after announcing that they will no longer be making use of the term "Dutch Golden Age" in their exhibtions about the seventeenth century. 

What is it about?

The Golden Age is therefore the central starting point for all colleges. The first lecture in a series of six lectures where we will look at nuances that play within the art world with special regard to the impact that the Golden Age has on art and how we view art. What problems does the term Dutch Golden Age hold? Who represents what and who? Through a series of key points made by various academics we will explore the term Dutch Golden Age and the debate in the museum world around it.  Asking questions is part of active life long learning and building a strong cultural heritage.


Who is this for?

The in person course is for the community Voorschoten. The community where I live and the Museum where I also volunteer. This course is for everyone who wants to know more about how the Dutch Golden Age influence how we look at art today. We will look at why art from this time is still so telling and steps taken with work from this period. This first lecture will explain why so much research, exhibitions and general attention are being devoted to the Golden Age and why museologists no longer want the term Golden Age. And how do we proceed with the demand for an offer about art from the seventeenth century?


No, really who is this for?

In researching this lecture, I I objectively started from the material and built on academic text. My international background also emotionally distanced my insight. Which is part of academic training. However, it left no room for emotional understanding. Something which is key to understanding parts of this debate.

While talking with my Dutch partner, I discovered that I am approaching it wrong. He and I were a few mental steps apart. I started rewriting this for a native Dutch audience. On the one hand, a direction that we were stepping away from, but even important that you also see why this is beneficial for you. A bit like having to justify to men that feminism also has benefits for men. Progress should not be related to old-fashioned power relations. However, it is important to build bridges between old systems of power and when it shifts. That we can all cross the bridge to a more balanced and nuanced society. This also in turn makes places safer for diverse representation. So in this reading, we often see the theme of power coming back. Because that influences how we look at the seventeenth century again. And how we look at the seventeenth century is influenced by how we as Dutch people look at ourselves, the past and objects and also our society.


Why here, why English?

The lecture series, has not started yet, it kicks off Thursday 13 February 2020 at Museum Voorschoten. Yet we are sold out completely and are getting calls all the time just to allow one or even eight more participants. So I have decided to post the lecture series here in English. The village Voorschoten is home to The British School of The Netherlands and has a large expat, immigrant and asylum population. I myself also being a South African immigrant whose second language is English. The lectures are hosted in my third language Dutch. I hope this way, my research and lecture reaches more people and satisfies those who have not been able to participate in the lecture on Thursday evening at Museum Voorschoten.



Art Historian and Gallery Manager.

Immigrant, not expat.

South African for 18 years and Dutch for 12 years.

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