“I see drawings and pictures in the poorest of huts and dirtiest of corners.” – Vincent Van Gogh

Amsterdam. A city renowned for its culture, history, art and UNESCO world heritage listed canals, will see a surge in creative events this month with the renowned Amsterdam Art Weekend and International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam (IDFA) taking place in locations around the city.

A walk around the Herengracht, Prinsengracht or Keizergracht – Amsterdam’s three main canals, will weave you through what the Dutch city has to offer. The tightly packed canal house gables, icons in their own architectural right, display the mastery of Dutch architecture from the 16th to 20thCenturies. They are richly decorated and among them we see other important buildings such as the Westerkerk Tower and DAM Square, a nod to the artistic values that Amsterdam is renowned for.

A vivid arts scene where one can listen to the world renowned Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra or visit the Van Gogh Museum, or for that matter, any of the 140 galleries or 40 museums that the city has to offer. Everyday new arts events are curated for Amsterdammers or anyone with an artistic bent.

Amsterdam Art Weekend is one of those events, offering an extensive range of events including exhibitions, performances, screenings and conversations. Now in its fourth edition, Amsterdam Art Weekend aims to foster the strong sense of artistry ubiquitous in Amsterdam. The weekend will see instalments expressing topical issues, glimpses into the past, imaginative photography and all that is exuberant, captivating and intriguing.

Galleries will offer exhibitions and other special events, such as performances, artist talks, concerts and small-scale art fairs. The latest and best contemporary art will be on display, from residents and more.

Coinciding with Amsterdam Art Weekend is IDFA, the world’s largest film festival that has run annually since 1988. IDFA’s main intention is to promote and broadcast documentaries and films on an international scale. More than 200 films and documentaries will feature, which have sought unique methods of production and recording, with the films sharing stories of American popular culture, religion, school and more. Debates, workshops and other events are also a part of the film festival, as well as a number of art films which have been submitted by galleries and ateliers as part of its Paradocs program. The 15 films in this program showcase what is going on beyond the frame of traditional documentary filmmaking, on the borders between film and art, truth and fiction, and narrative and design. IDFA Paradocs is also participating in the Amsterdam Art Weekend with a special program.

From an aerial view of Amsterdam, we see an almost hexagonal pattern formed by its canals. They cut through the city, pass through the boroughs, run under the famed gondolas and pulse to the millions of footsteps traversing over bridges and roads everyday. But Amsterdam is more than its canals. Amsterdam Art Weekend and IDFA are two examples where Amsterdam’s artistic influence is fostered and shared with the world.

Amsterdam Art Weekend runs from Thursday 26 – Sunday 29 November. IDFA will take place from Wednesday 18 – Sunday 29 November.

This post first appeared on fluoro. © HM Group (Aus) Pty Ltd 2015

feature image by: faunng’s photos / flickrcc

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