Friday, September 8, 2023

NDSM - The artsy side of Amsterdam


While I was on my day trip exploring Clogs, Cheese and Windmills, the guide suggested that I go to NDSM to find  funky side of Amsterdam. So, a couple of days later, I headed to Central Station to catch the free ferry and explore the area.

Central Station - Amsterdam

NDSM is a neighborhood on the north side of the IJ River, 3.2 Km (1.5 miles) from the center of Amsterdam. It was the home to a large shipbuilding company. - Nederlandsch Dok en Scheepsbouw Maatschappij (Dutch Dock and Shipbuilding Company). The company folded in 1984, and its buildings became homes and studios for many artists, who took advantage of their abandonment to repurpose them as free space. In 1990, the ninety hectare (0.34 sq mi) site was bought by the borough of Amsterdam-noord. In 1999 the borough began the process of “urban renewal” and gentrification, but allowed those who has squatted there to take over their spaces.






NDSM became seen as a “cultural incubator.” Trendy companies opened offices there. The artists remained and used their studio space and collectives to maintain an artsy edge to the area, with the old shipbuilding shed now housing four hundred artists, designers, architects and set designers.

One of the main draws in NDSM is the Straat Museum. Its 8000 sq ft are dedicated to street art and graffiti artists. The works on display are the size of murals, although most of them were created specifically for the museum. With 150 works by over 130 artists on display at any one time, Straat Museum offers an exploration in the wide variety of subjects and styles that street artists are producing around the world.

untitled by Danielle See-Walker

Weak Becomes Hero by HERA of Herakut

The Residue of Arrogance by Eddie Colla

Pride and Joy by Dale Grimshaw

Far From Home/Home is Where the Hatred Is by Guitry Banjo

David vs Goliath by Osch

Into the Eyes by Zurik

Nectar by Kayla Mahaffey

Hiobotschaft (Bad News) by Sokar Uno

Cubes 42 by Mr. June

Perpetual Lozange by Astro

Escape by Snik

Close to You by Studio Giftig

Three X's by Mr. Doodle

After exploring the Straat Museum, I walked over to the Noorderlicht Cafe. Set in an open space along the river, this cafe/beer garden offers good, fresh seasonal food at reasonable prices.

My trip across the IJ was a wonderful way spend my last day in Amsterdam. The next day it was back to Paris, and then a flight home. All in all, this trip had been a wonderful return for me, on my first European trip post-pandemic.

1 comment:

  1. Love being an armchair traveler through your photos. You probably got your camera to records all kinds of details that I would have missed if I had been there. Thanks for sharing.