An old acquaintance
On 1 July 1947, Bram Hammacher is appointed curator and acting director of the Rijksmuseum Kröller-Müller. Hammacher is very familiar with the collection. During and after his study of art history, he wrote as an art critic for various newspapers and magazines. Helene Kröller-Müller valued his often-harsh opinion. She saved the clippings of his reviews and even wanted to hire him as ‘in-house critic’. Hammacher, however, refused her offer. He was not impressed by Helene’s art-historical vision, as she described it in her book Considerations. Nevertheless, he did visit the Museum Kröller at the Lange Voorhout in The Hague on several occasions. Later he writes: ‘With the map in my hand, and always alone, I wandered around there several times as a novice art historian. […] It is there […] that I first experienced de toute-puissance impressions of a late 19th and early 20th century art that gradually but overwhelmingly and irreversibly absorbed my existence. […] Where else could one enjoy a Redon room, with nothing but Redon […]. There, one could become imbued with a painter and never forget him’.