The museum Beelden aan Zee began as a private collection that was established in 1969 by Theo and Lida Scholten.
After decades of obvious pleasure acquiring hundreds of sculptures, the Scholtens took the initiative to found a museum for sculptural art. The building, designed by architect Wim Quist, was opened in 1994. Their entire collection of international sculpture is housed in museum Beelden aan Zee, and forms the platform for the museum's artistic programmes. The underlying theme of the collection remains the human form in contemporary sculpture as interpreted by living artists from around the world.
A major expansion of the collection meant the opening of the Gipsoteca, which not only documents the creative process behind the commissioning of monuments, but also the emergence and blossoming of modern public sculpture in the Netherlands.
Positioned on the museum's patios, terraces and on the boulevard (SprookjesBeelden aan Zee or Fairytale Sculpture by the Sea) is a monumental collection of sculptures that are able to withstand the elements.
The Kleine Zaal displays a cross-section of works intended to do justice to both the richness of the collection as well as to sculpture as a medium. The presented selection illustrates the widest possible variety of sculptors, materials, composition, style and concept. The timeline of modern western sculptural art serves as both basis and point of departure for visitors.