Waterways of Holland and Belgium
Cruise Holland and Belgium's canals and waterways as you take in their magnificent art collections, spellbinding gardens, and enchanting medieval villages.
WHAT OUR TRAVELERS SAY
Our Smithsonian tour was amazing. It was educational, scenic and fun. All the guides were exceptional and truly gave us insight into our destination.”
The tour "Waterways of Holland and Belgium" was a truly wonderful, joyous experience - the places visited were interesting and often awe-inspiring; the ship was a lovely "base" and the leaders all were marvelous - and, I might add, we had a thoroughly delightful group of fellow travelers!”
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Valerie Hedquist is an associate professor of art history at the University of Montana. She earned her Ph.D. with honors at the University of Kansas and has been teaching and writing for over twenty years. As a Fulbright Scholar, Hedquist researched the religious art of the Dutch 17th-century in Utrecht. During her academic life, she has continued to explore and teach the art and architecture of the Netherlands, where she has traveled with students and pursued additional scholarly work, most recently on the plague. In addition to publications and presentations on the religious paintings of Vermeer and Rembrandt, Hedquist has written reviews and catalog essays for museum exhibitions, broadcast radio programs, and presented papers to local, regional, and international meetings on Dutch themes. Since her first visit to the Ghent Altarpiece in 1975, she has returned to the Low Countries whenever she can to enjoy frites and fietsen, French fries and cycling.
Corine Wegener is the Cultural Heritage Preservation Officer in the Office of the Under Secretary for History, Art, and Culture at the Smithsonian Institution. She coordinates the Smithsonian’s role in emergency response and recovery for cultural heritage threatened by natural disasters, human conflict, and other challenges.
Her connection to the Smithsonian began with the Haiti Cultural Recovery Project, where she served as international project coordinator for the preservation of more than 30,000 objects of Haitian heritage after the devastating 2010 earthquake. Her recent projects include assistance for cultural heritage in New York after Hurricane Sandy and emergency training workshops for cultural heritage professionals from Mali, Syria, and other countries experiencing armed conflicts. Before her arrival at the Smithsonian, Wegener was associate curator in the department of Decorative Arts, Textiles, and Sculpture at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts. In her concurrent Army Reserve career, she served her last assignment as the Arts, Monuments, and Archives officer for the 352d Civil Affairs Command in Baghdad, Iraq.
Wegener assisted staff at Iraq National Museum in the aftermath of the devastating looting and supervised the preservation and freezing of the water damaged collections known as the Iraqi Jewish Archive. Now retired from the Army Reserve, she continues to serve on the board of the Civil Affairs Association and organizes regular military cultural heritage awareness events at the Smithsonian. In 2006, Wegener founded the US Committee of the Blue Shield, part of an international organization dedicated to raising awareness of the 1954 Hague Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the event of Armed Conflict. Wegener lectures and writes about the importance of cultural property protection during natural disasters and armed conflict. She holds a BGS from the University of Nebraska-Omaha and dual MA degrees in Art History and Political Science from the University of Kansas.