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Huis Marseille Photography Museum in Amsterdam

Huis Marseille is a contemporary photography museum in Amsterdam. The museum is located on the classy Keizersgracht canal in two monumental 17th century merchant houses.

The house at Keizersgracht 401 was commissioned by a wealthy French merchant called Isaac Focquier and was built in 1665. If you look closely at the facade above the windows you will see a stone plaque with a depiction of Marseille harbour. In 1676 Focquier was declared bankrupt and had to sell the property.

huis marseille museum amsterdam
Huis Marseille Amsterdam – building entrance

In the 1990s the house was purchased by the De Pont Museum (Tilburg) and restored. It opened to the public in 1999 as the Huis Marseille, Amsterdam’s first photography museum.

huis marseille plaque
Huis Marseille Amsterdam – plaque

In 2013 the museum effectively doubled in size by acquisition of the adjacent house at Keizersgracht 399.

On entering the museum you will see some impressive stuccowork on the ceiling of the entrance hall.

huis marseille entrance corridor
Huis Marseille – entrance corridor

Huis Marseille contains 14 exhibition spaces – these are clear, uncluttered and aesthetically pleasing which helps to enhance the photographic works on display.

huis marseille gallery
Huis Marseille – gallery
huis marseille gallery bench
Huis Marseille – gallery bench

The garden room also contains a beautiful circular ceiling painting by renowned Dutch painter Jacob de Wit (1695-1754).

huis marseille garden room (tuinzaal) with jacob de wit ceiling
Huis Marseille – Garden Room with Jacob De Wit ceiling

There is an elegant garden at the back with a restored garden house which is one of the exhibition spaces. The garden has a number of seats and benches which allow visitors to enjoy the tranquility of the spot.

huis marseille museum amsterdam garden
Huis Marseille Amsterdam – garden
huis marseille garden and house
Huis Marseille – garden and house

Huis Marseille holds around 4 diverse photographic exhibitions per year (changing every 3 months or so) covering a variety of photo genres. The museum collaborates with a wide variety of contemporary photographers.

The museum is principally focused on ‘photography as an artistic medium’ and often features more avant-garde artists often portraying social themes.

There is a small bookshop in the museum which has a specially curated selection of photo books and general merchandise. Note the museum does not have a café (only a coffee machine available) and the building is not fully wheelchair accessible.

huis marseille shop
Huis Marseille – shop

There is also a library on site with an array of photographic-themed books which is available to all museum visitors during the standard opening hours.

huis marseille museum library
Huis Marseille Amsterdam – library

There are special guided tours at extra charge available by appointment for a maximum of 15 people. These cover either the current exhibition or the history of Huis Marseille.

The Huis Marseille museum is recommended if you have an interest in contemporary photography and also want to have a look inside a grand canal house and garden in Amsterdam.

Also located on the Keizersgracht canal is the FOAM Photography Museum.

Huis Marseille Museum Essential Info

Huis Marseille Opening Hours

Open daily 1000-1800, closes 2100 on Thursdays.

The museum can be closed for about 1 week prior to each new exhibition.

Huis Marseille Tickets & Admission

€12.50 for adults, €6.50 for seniors 65+, students and CJP cultural youth pass holders. FREE entry for children 0-17, Museumkaart and I Amsterdam City Card holders.

Order the I Amsterdam City Card online here which includes free entrance to Huis Marseille, FOAM and many other Amsterdam museums and attractions.

How to Get to Huis Marseille

The Huis Marseille Museum is on the Keizersgracht canal, a short walk (north-west) from Leidsestraat. From Amsterdam Central take trams 2, 11 or 12 to Keizersgracht.

Address / Contact

Huis Marseille Museum, Keizersgracht 401, 1016 EK Amsterdam
T: +31(0)20 531 8989, huismarseille.nl

Last updated 3 May 2024. This article was first published in 2010 and has been regularly updated.

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