TOC Mar 18, 2023

Rijksmuseum Bulletin, vol. 71 (2023), no. 1: Women of the Rijksmuseum

Anne-Maria van Egmond

The Rijksmuseum Bulletin volume 71 (2023), issue 1
freely accessible via


Jenny Reynaerts
Editorial: Women of the Rijksmuseum

Erik A. de Jong
L’Art du Bonheur: Rituals of Domesticity in VideoSchetsboek, Pink 1983
This contribution analyses Pink’s artwork VideoSchetsboek (1983), a performance part of the project L’Art du Bonheur, which shows the same ‘De Koning family’ repeatedly in different interiors within the same street by means of a series of photographs and videos. The emphasis on ritual and domesticity in this series explains its recent inclusion in the collection of the Royal Antiquarian Society (KOG ). The ideals of the KOG after its foundation in 1858 reflected, for example through the Atlas of Manners and Customs, those of a nineteenth-century society in which an orderly interior was seen as a core value: domestic happiness was deemed to be good for the development of the nation. Those values changed after 1900 with discussions about individuality and a sense of taste. With the increasing prosperity in the second half of the twentieth century, it became possible for everyone to furnish a home interior as a reflection of their own identity. Pink’s work questions this individualization. Since 1980, the values attributed to marriage and family have declined sharply and all kinds of alternative types of households and discussions about them have arisen. In conjunction with the KOG’s older collections, Pink’s work makes it possible to gain insight into this ever changing culture of living and its domestic rituals and provides context to discussions on their meaning.

Short notice
Femke Valkhoff
‘Vrouwen die brouwen’: The Life and Work of Maritge Claesdr Vooght
As a result of a one-sided perspective and the lack of surviving information, historians and art historians have long had a blind spot when it comes to seventeenth-century women. This is why Maritge Claesdr Vooght’s life, and that of many other portrayed women in the museum, remains invisible. In addition to the standard methodology – traditional archival and literature research – studying the marginalized in history requires more attention to circumstantial evidence. This paradigm shift could potentially bring to light stories like Maritge Vooght’s, enabling us to write more inclusive and equitable histories.

Suzanne van Leeuwen
‘Met diamanten omset’: Hoop Rings in the Northern Netherlands (1600-1700)
In 2018 the Rijksmuseum acquired a gold ring from the first half of the seventeenth century set with nineteen table-cut diamonds. Although this type of ring appears in several pendant portraits from the Northern Netherlands, physical examples are extremely rare. Only one other example is known aside from the one in the Rijksmuseum’s collection. Archival material and contemporary dictionaries have revealed that in the seventeenth century this type of ring was known as a hoop ring and that it differed from other rings because of its shape. The hoop ring is an uninterrupted circle that became increasingly elaborately decorated in the course of the seventeenth century: with engraved patterns filled with enamel and set all around with pearls or table- and rose-cut diamonds. It can be seen from pendant portraits dating from the first half of the seventeenth century that women usually wore the hoop rings on the index finger of the right hand – the preferred hand and finger on which the wedding rings was worn in the Northern Netherlands in this period. Hoop rings are sometimes noted as trouwringen in estate inventories. However, the term trouwring can refer to both the engagement and to the marriage. For the time being, the function of the recently acquired ring remains unclear, but the placement of many hoop rings on the forefinger discussed in this article makes a connection with marriage likely.

Mattie Boom, Maartje Brattinga, Jeroen ter Brugge, Jan van Campen, Eveline Deneer, Sara van Dijk, Ludo van Halem, Charles Kang, Manon van der Mullen, Sheila Reda, Hans Rooseboom, Frits Scholten and Maren de Wit
Recent Acquisitions: Women in the Rijksmuseum Collection

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