Photo Exhibition "Leiden History Pages"

19 December 2013

From December 19, 2013 to January 19, 2014 Georgian National Museum Dimitri Shevardnadze National Gallery hosts the photo exhibition ‘Erwin Olaf: Leiden, History Pages' organized by ArtEcho Foundation. The opening ceremony will take place on 19th of December 2013, at 19:00.

The photographs of Erwin Olaf illustrate a significant historical event in the history of The Netherlands - the siege and relief of Leiden from Spanish conquerors on October 3, 1574.

William the Silent, Prince of Orange decided to reward the heroism of citizens of Leiden and offered them to choose either the tax freedom or the foundation of a university. Long suffered, but glorified and victorious citizens of Leiden chose a university and the second oldest university in Europe was founded in Leiden in 1975. Leiden was also a hometown of Rembrandt van Rijn.

Commissioned by Leiden University and Leiden Municipal Museum De Lakenhal in 2011, the photographs represent the modern interpretation of this significant page in the history of The Netherlands been depicted by many Dutch artists of the Middle Ages .  

Eight photographs from the collection of Leiden University are exhibited for the first time outside The Netherlands and will be publicly displayed in the Dimitri Shevardnadze National Gallery in Tbilisi, Georgia. The project "Leiden: History Pages" is the fourth edition of Festival Iberia organized by Dutch ArtEcho Founartion. ArtEcho Foundation aims to promote the cultural interchange and approximation between East and West cultures. Festival Iberia annually offers distinguished performances and events with the participation of high class artist to the Dutch and Georgian audiences. (More information:

The project is supported by the Ministry of Culture and Monument Protection of Georgia and Leiden University, as well  as several Georgian and International companies.

The Georgian National Museum continues the Dutch-Georgian collaboration with this exhibition. Different cities in The Netherlands hosted several exhibitions from the Georgian National Museum In recent years. The unique archeological findings from Dmanisi were exhibited in the Naturalis, the National Museum of Natural History in Leiden in  2009-2012. The Georgian National Museum organized Dutch-Georgian contemporary art exhibition "Beyond the Borders" in Tbilisi History Museum in 2010 The Dordrecht Museum hosted the exhibition of 45 works of Niko Pirosmani in 2012 and the Georgian National Museum organized the exhibition of the XVII- XIX centuries Dutch paintings in the Simon Janashia Museum of Georgia in May of 2012, celebrating the 20 years anniversary of the relations between the two countries.

Address: Dimitri Shevardnadze National Gallery, 11 Shota Rustaveli Avenue.

Olaf Erwin, born in 1959 in Hilversum, The Netherlands, has been professionally active for over twenty-five years, and is well known for his sophisticated, ingenious style, in which his exceptionally modern photo series and commercial photographs are created. Some of his most famous photographic series include "Grief", "Rain", and "Royal Blood". is most famous for his commercial and personal work. He has been commissioned to photograph advertising campaigns for large International companies such as Heineken, BMW, Microsoft, Nokia, Levi's, Diesel, Hennessey, Lavazza, Vogue. His works have received many awards and are shown in many galleries and museums all around the world.