The special initiative of Marcel Wanders, made in collaboration with the Rijksmuseum and publisher Steven Hond, the unlimited edition of ‘Rijks, Masters of the Golden Age’ has now sold 25.000 copies in the first two years since its publication. This is one of three versions of the unique art publication that pays homage to the 17th Century Dutch masterpieces from the Rijksmuseum’s prestigious Gallery of Honour.

The unlimited edition is a price-friendly version that ambitiously aims to make the book accessible to everyone. “Without the help, support and enormous drive of the book sellers, we could never reach this milestone of selling 25.000 books,” says publisher Steven Hond. “I first thought it would be a challenge to sell the exclusive edition of such an extraordinary book, but the unlimited edition really struck a chord of people’s hearts,” adds Nadine Paagman, co-owner of bookstore Paagman.

To celebrate the book’s success, Marcel Wanders and Steven Hond partnered with Paagman bookshop in Den Haag. A special action took place, a customer who purchased the Unlimited Edition of the book was also surprised with a Limited Edition exemplar.  Steven Hond, Nadine Paagman, Simone Roodnat from Marcel Wanders and Thorwald Letzer gathered for this gifting event. “I am so incredibly grateful. I’m now busy deciding where the best place in my home is for giving this volume the proper space and attention it deserves”, adds Thorwald Letzer, the lucky customer of Paagman.

Launched in April 2016 at the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam and made available to the public in August 2016, the project was born of Marcel Wanders’ profound appreciation for this outstanding cultural heritage and its enduring significance. This ground-breaking volume book brings us eye to eye with over 60 iconic paintings such as Rembrandt’s Night Watch and Vermeer’s Milkmaid. Each piece is experienced up close with the most surprising detail as the finest printing techniques and thoughtful perspectives transport these paintings from a different age and vividly bring them to life.

Leading contemporary critical thinkers from the worlds of philosophy, art, film, food, trend, business and design explain how their perception of the world has been influenced by these paintings with each of the 30 renowned experts focusing on an individual artwork. Featuring writings of Ferran Adrià, David Allen, Alain de Botton, Anton Corbijn, Angela Missoni, Jimmy Nelson, Erwin Olaf and many more, the testimonies add a new way of seeing not only these masterpieces, but also life itself. 

For its uniqueness, contemporary writings and beautiful hand-written calligraphy, the 5-kilogram Unlimited Edition stands out. It features 100% cutouts of the original paintings, allowing for a one-on-one type of experience, next to close ups that show each brushstroke and craquelé. “I believe the power of these works goes beyond their presentation. They have an inherent quality that catches your eye and pulls you in. They have star power,” former Rijksmuseum director Wim Pijbes says.