NMVW Collections

Online collection database

The online collection database is host to the collection of the Nationaal Museum van Wereldculturen (Tropenmuseum, Afrika Museum and Museum Volkenkunde) and that of the Wereldmuseum Rotterdam. The collection contains nearly 450,000 objects and 260,000 photographic images that are part of the state or municipality collections, and another 350.000 images of documentary value.

Entire collection accessible

Only a small part is on display in the museum galleries. The online collection database enables you to browse a growing part of the collection, including that which is stored behind the scenes. For this presentation, the collection has been subdivided in objects and photographic collections, and has been linked to constituents, exhibitions, expeditions and themes.

Create an account to save your selections, and to order images via our web shop. For questions and remarks, contact collectie@wereldculturen.nl.


To order photographs of our collection you can create an account and place the preferred photographs in your shopping basket:​ http://collectie.wereldculturen.nl. If you have questions about ordering photographs, usage of photographs, creditlines, etc. please contact Ingeborg Eggink.  

Loan requests

Loan requests must be submitted a minimum of six months before the start of the exhibition period. For detailed information, loan fees and general conditions, please refer to the Info sheet Loan Requests (PDF) and Conditions of Loan (PDF).

For more information about the procedure, please contact registrar@wereldculturen.nl.


To search the catalogue of the RCMC Library in Leiden, click or tick http://www.rmv.nl/rmvbooks/. For more information about the library, please contact bibliotheek@wereldculturen.nl

Opening hours library
10 am - 12.30 pm and 13.30 - 16.30 pm
Tuesday - Friday
Please note that the library is closed during the summer from 23 July till 6 August 2018.

Object consultation

Do you have questions about an object that is in your possession? Does the object come from a region that is represented in the Tropenmuseum, Afrika Museum or Museum Volkenkunde? Perhaps one of our curators can help you to learn more about this object.

The curators can answer questions such as 'What is it exactly?', 'Where does it come from?', 'Is it authentic or fake?' and 'How old is it?'. Please note that the curators will not make valuations of objects.

Object consulation takes place every first Thursday of the month (with the exception of the holiday period), between 12.00 and 13.00, in Museum Volkenkunde in Leiden. More information is available on the website of Museum Volkenkunde.

You can also ask a question to the curator online by filling in this form on the website of Museum Volkenkunde. This way we can handle the question properly as all applications are sorted centrally and forwarded to the curator in question. If you need any assistance with filling in the online form, please contact the curatorial department.