KWAB. Dutch design in the Age of Rembrandt, Rijksmuseum Amsterdam

KWAB. Dutch design in the Age of Rembrandt, Rijksmuseum Amsterdam

I visited the Rijksmuseum with the special exhibition KWAB. Dutch design in the age of Rembrandt. Fantastic sea creatures, monstrous beasts, whimsical body shapes and fluid contours that seem to drip like syrup from a spoon: all are manifestations of the ornament style known as kwab, ‘auricular’ or ‘lobate’ – with the English denominations referring to the organic forms of the ear.

In this exhibition, a spectacular design by theatre and lighting designer Keso Dekker, renowned for his ballet sets by Hans van Manen, brings together 130 auricular masterpieces in the Rijksmuseum. A selection of the finest silverware, alongside paintings by Rembrandt and Metsu, prints and drawings, tables, cabinets, gilt-leather wall hangings and brass church decorations, will tell the story of this spectacular Dutch Design of the Golden Age.