Have you seen those psychedelic and super creative pictures on Instagram yet of girls in fairy tale settings, often fully surrounded by lights, or galaxy decors? These are usually taken at special pop-ups or exhibits in museums in Tokyo and New York, which are very Instagrammable, but often quite crowded as well.
Unfortunately most of the time you have to get in line for up to an hour to be able to access one of those exhibits for only a minute, before you have to make room for the next person…
Don’t get me wrong I love those kind of pictures, and adore creative exhibits and museums, but like mine less crowded and more laid-back in general. Therefore I was happy to find a good alternative in the Moco (MOdern COntemporary) Museum in Amsterdam, which I can’t wait to share with you in this blog!
This museum is located in the capital of my country, one of the most creative cities in the Netherlands, housing a big variety of renowned museums. But also several smaller exhibits and galleries, offering something for everyone.
If you’re looking for a city trip filled with cultural highlights, typified by heritage, and buzzing with creativity, then Amsterdam is the place to be, and one of the classiest neighborhoods to stay in is Oud-Zuid. Generally because of its safe character, beautiful architecture, classy atmosphere and many cultural possibilities, centrally located in and around the Museum Quarter (Museum Kwartier).
With 3 of the most popular and renowned museums: Rijksmuseum, Stedelijk and Van Gogh Museum, and the beautiful Concertbuilding, all near each other on 1 square, divided by a large lawn, perfect for picnics in summer!
Personally I really like the Rijksmuseum for its beautiful setting, stunning building and scenic gardens, but actually prefer smaller ones.
Unique location & architecture
Therefore I was happy to find the relatively new Moco Museum, located in Villa Alsberg, a stunning mansion, next to the Van Gogh museum, directly looking out upon the Museumplein and Rijksmuseum!
This classy townhouse was one of the first family homes built along Museumplein, designed in 1904 by the nephew of the renowned Pierre Cuypers, who designed Amsterdam’s Central Station and the Rijksmuseum. Later used as a law firm office, and currently privately owned by Moco's founders Kim and Lionel Logchies.
Moco Museum must visit!
This couple obviously doesn’t shy away from irony and humor! They have a big passion for modern and contemporary art, unconventional pieces, and did their best to assemble some of the most unique artworks of modern artists like Banksy, Andy Warhol and Roy Lichtenstein, with varying exhibitions every few months.
Their motto is: ‘We focus on proven artists with a unique vision’, which became evident during our visit.
While the Moco Museum was founded just 3 years ago, it already got the nr.7 spot on the sought-after ‘’Best visited museums of the Netherlands’’ list!
The big collection of street- and pop-art attracts many youngsters, and provides great photo opps, with colourful pieces and great quotes as you can see in this gallery:
But in my opinion this fresh art museum can be of interest for visitors of all ages, who appreciate modern art in a unique architectural setting, with a wide range of artworks presented in a boutique atmosphere.
One of the most famous artists displayed at the Moco Museum is the controversial Banksy, in an unauthorized exhibition with works from several private collections.
The mysterious British street artist is best known for his humorous and political statement pieces, such as the street-artworks: ‘Girl with Balloon’ and ‘Laugh Now’, which are all on display here. As well as many of his indoor canvas works, one even better than the other:
I love how well thought out and controversial his pieces are! They really make you think about current events and political issues in a fun and casual way.
Moco Museum also permanently displays artworks of modern icons like Warhol, Basquiat, Haring, Koons, Kusama, Hirst & Dali, but offers temporary Instagrammable rooms with creations of artists like Yayoi Kusama and Daniel Arsham as well.
Even though Arsham is a known New York artist, he hasn’t presented his work in the Netherlands until now. His exhibits can be seen at the Moco Museum until end of September, and should not be missed! I really love that his work is full of the unexpected, challenging your perception of what is possible.
Some examples are the Eroded Wallpaper Room and Calcified Living Room.
And of course his psychedelic purple Amethyst Ball Cavern in the basement, which will make you feel like entering an alternate reality, providing the perfect Instagram picture setting, as you can see here:
Architectural features & museum details
The fact that the mansion is so photogenic, with many historic architectural elements, big glass stained windows, and 4 stories with different themed floors, made this museum even more unique to me!
The only downside is that you have to walk quite some stairs, as the historical building doesn’t have lifts, and is therefore unfortunately not accessible for strollers or wheelchairs.
Although this Instagrammable museum is much less crowded than the ones in Tokyo and New York, I would still recommend to avoid peak times for the best photo opportunities. Of course this little villa can get crowded fast as well, but this is also part of its boutique charm. Although we visited after lunch, we were able to get these pictures without people in it by being patient and timing our shots well😊:
The museum is open every day from 9 am to 8/9 pm. For more details and to plan your visit go to their website: MocoMuseum.com for all info.
Have I convinced you of the uniqueness, charm and Instagrammable-ness (is that even a word?:P) of the Moco Museum? If you appreciate controversial artworks, unique architecture and culture, or just want to take some creative pics for social media or your scrapbook, this museum should not be missed during your next visit to the Netherlands and Amsterdam!
Do let me know what you think here, or on social media via the buttons at the bottom of this page.
*While this blog was written in collaboration with Moco Museum, it still reflects my honest opinion and own experiences, as always.