Discover Amsterdam
Meetings and Conventions
Live, Work and Study
What's on
See and do
Travel and stay
City Card and tickets
Discover Amsterdam
Meetings and Conventions
Live, Work and Study
Artwork Heerup Krig og fred 1945
Image from Henry Heerup - Cobra Museum

5 reasons to visit Cobra Museum in Summer 2023

It's the 75th anniversary of the revolutionary CoBrA art movement, and the celebrations will enter full throttle at the Cobra Museum of Modern Art. From June to October 2023, enjoy three exceptional exhibitions dedicated to all things modern art - alongside special activities and extended opening hours. A convenient bus ride from Amsterdam, here are our top 5 reasons to visit Cobra this summer.

1. Learn about a revolutionary art movement

Freedom without Borders: From Appel to Basquiat exhibition 2023 at Cobra
Image from Karel Appel, De val, 1981, Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen Rotterdam c/o Pictoright 2023

After creative expression had been suppressed for decades, the Cobra art movement (1948 -1951) caused a storm in the post-war years. Pushing forward concepts of freedom and vitality, a group of young progressives from Copenhagen, Brussels and Amsterdam (CoBrA) completely revolutionised the art scene. Cobra’s summer exhibition programme is the perfect introduction to key ideas within the movement, celebrating how its experimental and provocative nature reverberated through various art expressions for the past 75 years

2. Discover the connections between 120 famous artworks - all under one roof!

Freedom without Borders: From Appel to Basquiat exhibition 2023 at Cobra
Image from Edvard Munch, Blomstrende frukttrær i vind (Bloeiende fruitbomen in de wind), 1917-1919, Munch Museum, Oslo Norway c/o Pictoright 2023

Bringing together a blockbuster lineup of world-famous artists, Freedom without Borders: from Appel to Basquiatpositions some 120 iconic pieces in a fascinating dialogue with one another. Each sculpture or painting is accompanied by a related work of art so viewers can uncover the hidden connections and mutual influence of artists from different time periods. In addition to household names such as Karel Appel, Constant Nieuwenhuys, Paul Klee, Joan Miró and Edvard Munch, there are works by contemporary provocateurs such as Jackson Pollock and Jean-Michel Basquiat, to name a few. Particular attention is paid to the women artists who contributed to modernism, including Jacqueline de Jong, Cecily Brown and Tanja Ritterbex.

3. See lesser-known ceramics and illustrations by Picasso

Cobra Museum The Other Picasso: Back to the Origins exhibition 2023
Image from Pablo Picasso, La Cuisine (De keuken), Paris, novembre 1948, Musée national Picasso-Paris, Foto: RMN-Grand Palais (Musée national Picasso-Paris) / Mathieu Rabeau c/o Pictoright 2023

2023 also marks the 50th anniversary of the death of one of the most famous artists of the 20th century: Pablo Picasso. In tribute, Cobra will be dedicating a special exhibition to his career that runs simultaneously. The Other Picasso: Back to the Origins is a careful curation of almost 100 artworks from both public and private collections, including experimental drawings, ceramics and etchings. The exhibition also reveals his love for dance, theatre and literature, including set and costume designs he made for the ballet, a monumental stage curtain and illustrations of classic literary works and modern poetry.

4. Embrace your inner child

Freedom without Borders: From Appel to Basquiat exhibition Cobra Museum
Image from Courtesy of Eva Räder, October Cats, 2023

This summer, the museum will also be embracing one of Picasso’s most famous statements, “Every child is an artist”, with the exhibition All children are artists, which runs parallel. A selection of 40 children’s drawings provides a joyful impression of how children see the world - demonstrating their playful, uninhibited, spontaneous nature that was such a source of inspiration for the expressionists. Younger visitors can join in at Atelier CoBrA (Wednesdays and Sundays) to help produce a huge collage artwork that will continue to grow throughout the exhibition.

5. Enjoy special activities and extended opening hours

Internationale vrouwendag  - cobra museum
Cobra Museum
Image from Cobra Museum

Don’t miss the Cobra Pakt Uit! weekends (at the end of each month) for a jam-packed lineup of special activities, including a musical lecture by Michael Varekamp to highlight the critical role jazz played in the Cobra movement. Keep an eye on the website agenda for more details. Likewise, visitors can enjoy extended evening opening hours throughout the summer. From 8 June to 6 October, the museum (and museum café terrace) will be open until 20:00 on Thursdays and Fridays.

Freedom without Borders: From Appel to Basquiat
2 June – 8 October 2023

The Other Picasso: Back to the Origins
2 June – 8 October 2023

All children are artists
2 June – 8 October 2023

The Cobra Museum of Modern Art is located in Amstelveen, just a short journey south of Amsterdam. The museum is easily accessible by bike, car and public transportation. From Amsterdam Station Zuid, take bus 348/358 to Amstelveen bus station.

Choose a day and time slot to visit the museum and book your tickets here.