The Golden Age of Dutch Art

This course takes you out of the classroom and into cities, museums and churches – you will not be able to get closer to the masterpieces themselves!

This course is closed and you can't apply anymore. Please check our other courses.


Course Level
ECTS credits
Course location(s)
Utrecht, The Netherlands


Are you curious to learn more about Rembrandt's Nightwatch, Vermeer's Girl with the Pearl Earring, Hals's Laughing Figures or other Dutch masterpieces from the 17th century? Sign up for this course and discover the Golden Age of Dutch Art and its marvellous paintings, applied arts and architecture.

This course takes you back in time to the early modern period, when Dutch ships sailed the oceans from the Americas to the Indies, and the tiny Dutch Republic dominated the world's stage. You will find out what makes Dutch art from this period so unique. Not everything is what it seems: an innocent bouquet of flowers might hide a forbidden religious message. A happy family, where everyone is singing and laughing, turns out to be a warning against an undisciplined lifestyle. Of course you will learn lots about the famous masters - like Rembrandt, Vermeer and Hals - but there is much more to discover! Besides painters, many more artists, such as architects, gold- and silversmiths and engravers, contributed to the fame of this age with their innovative artworks. Also, the trade with Asia highly influenced Dutch art.

Upon completion of this course, you will have unravelled many highlights from the Dutch 16th and 17th centuries and you will have gained a profound insight into the many layers of Dutch Art from this inspiring era. You will be able to recognise the main artists, but you will also become confident in recognising, discussing and analysing artworks in general. What you learn in class and during the excursions will therefore also add depth and value to your own travels later on.

Join us on this interactive journey, with daily excursions. Travel and entrance to museums are included in the course fee.

Do you wish to extend your Summer School experience with another course in Dutch Art History? This course is part of the track A Journey through Dutch Art, which combines this course and the course Dutch Art from Van Gogh to Mondrian.

Day to Day Documents

A02_Day to day programme_2024.pdf

Target audience

The course is open to participants (graduates and non-graduates) from all disciplines with a keen interest in Art History.

Aim of the course

This course gives students a broad overview of Dutch Art from the 16th and 17th centuries through the exploration of history, culture, daily life, academic approaches and case-studies.

Study load

Approximately 40 contact hours. The course combines many elements, from lectures to excursions. Variation is ensured by going into the museum with a tour, in small groups or on your own with an assignment. During these excursions, we devote time to both the factual and technical aspects of the artworks, as well as the more personal and subjective ones, so that by the end, you will have explored art in many dynamic ways. Hidden meanings, unexpected techniques, your peers’ opinions or your own may surprise you and change and broaden your perception of the artworks again and again.


  • Course fee: €1175.00
  • Included: Course + course materials
  • Housing fee: €400
  • Housing provider: Utrecht Summer School

Additional information

The housing costs do not include a Utrecht Summer School sleeping bag. This is a separate product on the invoice. If you wish to bring your own bedding, please deselect or remove the sleeping bag from your order.