The Rijksakademie van beeldende kunsten was established in 1870 by a decree of King Willem III as the successor to the Koninklijke Akademie van Beeldende Kunsten, the Amsterdam-based Stads Tekenacademie (18th century), and the Konstkamer (17th century). Artists such as August Allebé, Antoon Derkinderen, Willem Witsen, Jan Veth, Jan Toorop, Berlage, Breitner, Piet Mondrian, Constant, Karel Appel and many more have studied at the Rijksakademie.

From classical academy to artists’ residency
The Rijksakademie in its present form as a residency is the result of a process that began in the 1980s. Teaching programs were thrown overboard, classrooms converted into individual studios and teachers made way for experienced artists and advisors.

From 1985 the Rijksakademie has developed greatly internationally, the number of applications has increased, the team of advisors has internationalized, and work by alumni can be seen across the globe. It is now an internationally recognized institution.

Prix de Rome
The Prix de Rome is the oldest national prize for fine arts and architecture in the Netherlands, and has been organized by the Rijksakademie van beeldende kunsten and its predecessors from 1807 until 2013. Since January 2013—in accordance with directives of the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science—the organization and funding of the award has been passed to the Mondriaan Fund.

Library and Collections
The library contains considerable material about the history of the Rijksakademie and the Prix de Rome. There is also an extensive contemporary collection. The library is open to the public; the collections can be viewed by appointment.