Amsterdam School: Behind the brick facade

Wandering through the city, touches of Renaissance and Art Deco design are evident in Amsterdam's beautiful architecture. But it's the intricate brickwork of the Amsterdam School movement that's really left its mark on the city. Discover the architecture of this home-grown movement through a tour – guided or on your own.

100 years of the Amsterdam School 

The style has roots in Expressionist architecture, borrowing elements from the Jugendstil (Art Nouveau) and Art Deco design aesthetic, and the aim was to create a total architectural experience – so designers paid great attention to both the interior and the exterior of each building. Due to the socialist ideals of its founders, the Amsterdam School style was often applied to housing estates for the working class, government institutions and schools. Many examples of this style can still be found in Amsterdam today, with some of the finest examples including Het Schip (now housing a museum dedicated to the movement) and Het Sieraad.

Amsterdam School Buildings

Het Sieraad

Het Sieraad (the jewel), originally a school to learn particular crafts, is a striking example of the Amsterdamse Schoolstijl (architectural style). T...

Olympiagebouw

The Bellamybuurt (neighbourhood) belongs to the first city expansion of the second half of the nineteenth century. This is where the first small facto...

Coöperatiehof

Residential complex Coöperatiehof (Cooperation court) is an ensemble of three blocks of workers’ houses, as well as a meeting hall and reading room fo...

Zwanenplein

During the First World War, the first terraced houses were built in the fields to the north of the IJ River, currently the Vogelbuurt (neighbourhood)....

Tuindorp Oostzaan

Tuindorp Oostzaan (garden city) was the first garden city with labourers’ homes and single family homes to be built in Amsterdam. Garden cities, an En...

Berlagebrug

A new bridge across the Amstel (river) at the Amstellaan (avenue), now the Vrijheidslaan was needed to connect the new neighbourhoods of Plan Zuid, Be...

Bureau Verkeerswezen

Traffic in Amsterdam grew rapidly at the beginning of the twentieth century. The police needed a place where they could examine motor vehicles and wei...

P.L. Takbuurt (district)

The Pieter Lodewijk Takbuurt came about between 1919 and 1921 by order of housing association De Dageraad. The design is by the two leading architects...

GVB-gebouw

Prior to 1900, public transport in Amsterdam was run by different private companies. The Municipality of Amsterdam took over these companies in 1899 a...

Badhuistheater

The bathhouse on the Andreas Bonnstraat (street) was considered to have the ideal bathhouse design in the 1920’s. It was the first free standing bathh...

Tuindorp Nieuwendam

Before the Second World War, Tuindorp Nieuwendam (the garden city of Nieuwendam) was seen as one of the most beautiful garden cities in Europe. It was...

Het Schip

Het Schip housing complex is a world-famous example of the Amsterdam School. Characteristic of this Dutch architectural style from the beginning of th...