Van Gogh Museum

For Bourne, The Van Gogh Museum is a client where we can combine all our knowledge of strategy and design. We are active in the field of (marketing) communication consulting, design management, the design of many communication means, exhibition communication etc. Below you can read all about our relationship with this very special museum.

Annual report Van Gogh Museum published


The annual report of the Van Gogh Museum has been published today. Bourne has coordinated this production. With the Van Gogh Museum we have thought about form, content and timing. Next we have been working with copywriters, designers, editors and translators. We are proud of the result!

View the report here.

Bourne-Design-Amsterdam-Bureau-Strategie-Huisstijl-Van Gogh Museum-Jaarverslag
Bourne-Design-Amsterdam-Bureau-Strategie-Huisstijl-Van Gogh Museum-Jaarverslag

A new entrance and new signing for the Van Gogh Museum

As of September 2015 the entrance of the Van Gogh Museum is officially located on Museum Square in Amsterdam. A sixteen month renovation in the exhibition wing, above and below ground, has substantially amended the capacity and thereby visitors logistics of the museum. At an early stage Bourne takes place within the construction team to solve signing and identification issues in direct consultation with the contractor and architect.


The signing system that we developed before for the museum, can effortlessly be put in place in the new spaces. We align the materials of the various elements as much as possible with the interior design of the architect.

In the main building, where the permanent collection is housed, the routing of visitors must also be completely revised. Many facilities (such as the cloakroom, information desk and the museum shop) are now located in the new entrance hall.

During exhibitions, various signage elements should be quickly adaptable to that destination.We revise the entire wayfinding program to meet these new, more complex, criteria.

With the new entrance a new location for the waiting visitors is also taken into use. Visitors immediately join the queue relevant to them. With Eurorouting we develop the signing around this new zone.

Bourne-Design-Amsterdam-Van Gogh Museum-signing-bewegwijzering-wayfinding
Bourne-Design-Amsterdam-Van Gogh Museum-signing-bewegwijzering-wayfinding
Bourne-Design-Amsterdam-Van Gogh Museum-signing-bewegwijzering-wayfinding

To prepare queueing visitors for their arrival in the museum and to answer the most asked question (‘Where are the toilets?’), we develop a short animation with, which shows the various destinations in the museum. An impression.

Online reporting by the Van Gogh Museum

From 2011 until 2015 Bourne has been handling the design, editing, coordination and realization of the online annual reports for the Van Gogh Museum. These reports include a timeline of highlights per month, so you can get a nice visual overview of what has been going on during the year at the museum. Besides the report consists of a number of downloadable PDFs. Each year we make an update in the same format, so we can keep the costs limited for the Van Gogh Museum. Find the reports here.

Bourne-Design-Bureau-Amsterdam-Van Gogh Museum-Jaarverslag
Bourne-Design-Bureau-Amsterdam-Van Gogh Museum-Jaarverslag

Elderly discover the artist within themselves

Ensuring meaning of life, social participation and social activity of the elderly in the Netherlands is a responsibility of us all. At least, that is how the Van Gogh Museum, transition consulting practice Viatore, care organization Cordaan, Zonnebloem and volunteer organization Vier het leven think about it. They join forces in the development of ‘Art defines man’, a special outreach program in which the museum meets vulnerable elderly and invites them to actively participate in the experience of art.

The Van Gogh Museum has developed a workshop that is part of the range of activities of the social partners for their audiences. During this workshop, participants learn about the life and work of Vincent van Gogh, they make their own art and discuss and share their experiences with each other. The Kröller-Müller Museum and the Alliance Van Gogh Brabant will also join the initiative.

Bourne develops the visual identity for Art defines man and writes all basic copy.

Bourne-Design-Amsterdam-Bureau-Van Gogh Museum-Kunst maakt de mens

Van Gogh Museum under construction. Our signing leads visitors to the entrance.

Interim communications consultancy at Van Gogh Museum

Over the years, the departments of Communication and Marketing of the Van Gogh Museum have frequently enabled Bourne for communications consultancy on an interim base.

In this capacity we advise on different kinds of topics. Our advices include a communications strategy for the educational programs of the museum, the realization of the entire communication

around the exhibition ‘Van Gogh at work’ (2013) and around the 40th anniversary of the museum in the same year, the development of a communication concept and plan for museum The Mesdag Collection (which is managed by the Van Gogh Museum), a marketing plan for the exhibition ‘Munch: Van Gogh’, briefings for design agencies, etc.

Bourne-Design-Amsterdam-Van Gogh Museum-communications

The museum as a consultant

In 2014 the museum starts a pilot as consultant (Van Gogh Museum Consultancy), an internationally oriented consulting agency in the field of museum management. Bourne designs information material for interested parties. We also design a certificate which VGMC can give to all participants. Unsolicited, just for the fun of it!

Bourne-Design-Amsterdam-Van Gogh-Museum-VGMC-Consultancy
Bourne-Design-Amsterdam-Van Gogh Museum-Consultancy

‘Felix Vallotton, fire beneath the ice’

In 2014, the Van Gogh Museum presents the exhibition 'Felix Vallotton, fire beneath the ice.’ Vallotton painted everyday life in a cool, aloof manner but gave it a surreal atmosphere and a deeper psychological level. As a viewer you can feel it and you wonder what is going on exactly.

The museum asks Bourne to take care of the campaign. In this campaign, we want to show the fire beneath the ice, Vallotton’s deeper meaning under the surface. In this image the tension is shown in the look of this seemingly neat girl. We put the eyes as centrally as possible.

Bourne-Van Gogh Museum-Felix Vallotton-Design
Bourne-Van Gogh Museum-Felix Vallotton-Design-Campaign

Design design design!

Bourne-Design-Amsterdam-Bureau-Van Gogh Museum-Communicatie
Bourne-Design-Amsterdam-Bureau-Van Gogh Museum-Communicatie
Bourne-Design-Amsterdam-Bureau-Van Gogh Museum-Communicatie

Campaign ‘Dreams of nature’

In 2012 the Van Gogh Museum presents ‘Dreams of nature’, an exhibition devoted to symbolist landscapes in Europe. Poetic and evocative paintings of nature from the period 1880-1910 give a new look at this intriguing movement. The exhibition covers from the precursors of

the symbolism to Mondrian and Kandinsky, who provided the impulse for major 20th-century movements such as surrealism and abstraction. Works by Monet, Gauguin, Van Gogh and Munch are on show here alongside less famous, but at least as fascinating artists from

Scandinavia and Eastern Europe.

Bourne develops a communication strategy to bring the exhibition to the attention of different audiences.

Bourne-Design-Amsterdam-Bureau-Van Gogh Museum-Dreams of nature-Campagne
Bourne-Design-Amsterdam-Bureau-Van Gogh Museum-Dreams of nature-Campagne
Bourne-Design-Amsterdam-Bureau-Van Gogh Museum-Dreams of nature-Campagne

At the core of the campaign are three ambassadors (poet/actor Ramsey Nasr, actor Jeroen Krabbé and writer Thomas Verbogt), who share their enthusiasm for a particular work with us. Their statements go viral before the exhibition opens, to get our audiences interested in the content.

The story of the Van Gogh Museum: more than art

With the Marketing and Communication departments of the Van Gogh Museum, we formulate a brand positioning for the museum. This consists of a combination of its values ​​and themes.

Of course it is important that the internal organization recognizes this positioning. Therefore it is a logical next step to write the corporate story of the Van Gogh Museum, which should give an interpretation of the defined themes and values.


We ask three key figures in the organization to tell us their story, based on the themes and values. By adding these three stories together we can create a first draft of the story.
This draft we present to the board, whereafter we allow a larger number of employees to influence the story by letting them tell what the brand positioning means to them in their daily practice. This way we make sure the story is not a message of the board for

the organization, but the story of the organization itself. Only then the brand can be lived credible and consistent internally.

We deliver the final story in collaboration with Buro Kort. The deliverable is a Prezi full of wonderful quotes by people who are working incredibly passionately in order to make sure that life and work of Vincent van Gogh remains accessible to as many people as possible.


Bourne-Design-Amsterdam-Bureau-Van Gogh Museum-Storytelling
Bourne-Design-Amsterdam-Bureau-Van Gogh Museum-Storytelling
Bourne-Design-Amsterdam-Bureau-Van Gogh Museum-Storytelling

Design poster exhibition ‘Snapshot’

At the end of 2011 the Van Gogh Museum presents the exhibition ‘Snapshot’. At the end of the 19th century a number of painters experimented with a new technique of photography. The exhibition shows how these snapshots affected their way of painting. Bedides, those snapshots give a glimpse into the everyday life of the time.

Bourne design the affiche for Snapshot and associated banners, advertisements, brochures etc.

Bourne-Van Gogh Museum-Snapshot-Design-Campaign

Implementation and monitoring visual identity Van Gogh Museum

In the summer of 2011, the museum launches its new visual identity, designed by Koeweiden Postma. Prior to this it is important to get the style well implemented in the organization. The Van Gogh Museum hires Bourne to supervise this implementation. In close cooperation with Koeweiden Postma we make sure proper guidelines and instructions are being delivered, so that other agencies can work with the design as well. We upload all design elements and instructions on TheGrid, our online identity manual. This way employees of the museum and their suppliers can always use the correct elements. After the launch, we ensure a proper application of the visual identity.

Bourne-Van Gogh Museum-interim
Bourne-Van Gogh Museum-Digitale manual-The Grid