The reason I like photography museums is twofold. Just like with paintings, you can enjoy them at your own pace and just stand in front of them for as long as you need to take it all in. Second, photography has given artists and exhibitors the possibility to tell stories by making or displaying series of pictures.
FOAM, the photography museum in Amsterdam, is really good at exhibiting these stories. They always have two, three or more exhibitions at the same time and are experts in selecting the ones that tell the most inspiring tales.
The current exposition that won me over is the one with pictures of Seydou Keïta. I have seen it two times already and I love the way he describes photography in the movie that is shown in the exhibition. According to Keïta photography is just great because you can save memories. This might seem a bit overly simplistic but when you look at the portraits he made and read the story of what he gave his customers by making these pictures you will get it. It is actually as simple as he put it, with extraordinary beautiful pictures as a result.
And also make sure you stop by the ‘Gold and Silver’ exposition to travel to the America of almost two centuries ago during the time of the goldrush.
These kinds of stories, old and new, make me visit FOAM a couple times each year, of course, combined with a lunch sandwich from De Kaaskamer.