Hockey is the second most interesting thing happening in Vancouver this weekend, according to one of the curators of a Dutch art exhibit debuting at the VAG.

Sunday marks the opening of Vermeer, Rembrandt and the Golden Age of Dutch Art – an event so significant it trumps the Canucks’ series, says Pieter Roelofs, curator of 17th Century Art at Amsterdam’s Rijksmuseum.

The exhibit features 128 works from masters such as Hals, Rembrandt and Vermeer – the latter of whom only has 36 known paintings in the world. Four of Vermeer’s paintings are at the Rijksmuseum.


One of the four is travelling to Vancouver for the show.

Even the Dutch royal family acknowledged the significance of the exhibit, with two members arriving on Saturday to kick off the event.

Princess Marilène and Prince Maurits van Oranje-Nassau, van Vollenhoven will be honoured on Saturday at the Dutch Masters Ball.

The family made headlines last week when a man plowed through a crowd celebrating Queen’s Day in Amsterdam, killing himself and six others in an attempt to hit the royal family.

Wim Pijbes, director of the Rijksmuseum, said the works in the exhibit come from a time when the Dutch Republic led the world in art, science and maritime exploration.

“This … era of creativity is represented by the works on display,” he said.