Around 60 previously unexhibited works from the Verhave collection show the development of the art of papercutting from the Golden Age to the late 1900s. The work on show includes papercuts from the Netherlands’ most famous papercut artist, Joanna Koerten (1650–1715). It was her work that caused papercutting to be seen as a fine art in the 17th century, just like oil painting.
Papercutting, otherwise known as psaligraphy, is a traditional craft that has been practised in the Netherlands since the beginning of the 16th century. Just as with painting, papercutting is all about creating a spacial effect in a two-dimensional plane. In the ‘Papercuts’ exhibition, different papercutting techniques are used to portray a range of themes such as portraits, landscapes, biblical themes and mythological tales. It is also the 300th anniversary of the death of renowned Amsterdam papercut artist Joanna Koerten. She possessed a unique talent for reproducing the particular characteristics of people on a minimalistic plane and excelled in the portrait papercuts for which she was famed. The presentation includes portraits of Czar Peter the Great and Frederick III of Brandenburg and scenes from daily life.