Freight – permanent exhibition at the MAS
Vracht - vaste expo in het MAS Antwerpen



Hanzestedenplaats 1, Antwerp


Vracht - vaste expo in het MAS Antwerpen - wake-up ruimte


Since December 2021, a new permanent exhibition can be admired on the sixth floor of the MAS: Freight. It replaces the ‘Port’ exhibition. So they deal with roughly the same subject, but now it’s really about the freight, the elements that were brought in the hold of the ships and transported to and from Antwerp.

Vracht - vaste expo in het MAS Antwerpen - plattegrond van de haven

Plan of the port of Antwerp

In the focus room (the long space on the left after you enter the exhibition space) the map of the port of Antwerp is depicted. A text and an element are shown per time period. Be sure to press the buttons below the text, they highlight the outline of the harbor from that time on the big plan.

Vracht - vaste expo in het MAS Antwerpen - 3d constructie van een Kogge

The Cog

The exhibition space is divided into docks, six in total. In each dock, just like on the plan of the harbor, a time period is depicted. The first dock covers the earliest period with memories of the Romans and Vikings. The Middle Ages can be found in dock two. One of the showpieces is the model of the Cog of Deurganck. When excavating the Deurganck dock, one of the largest and most complete cogs was encountered. A cog is a ship widely used by the Hanseatic League, it was compact and manoeuvrable and sailed from the Baltic States to the Mediterranean. The cog was completely scanned and each part was printed in plastic on a scale of 1/10. The model is more than 2 meters long.

Vracht - vaste expo in het MAS Antwerpen - schilderij Scaldis en Antverpia

Scaldis and Antverpia

Opposite the third dock hangs a painting depicting a man and a woman. It is a copy of a work by Abraham Janssens from 1608 and it represents the river god Scaldis. He gives the city maiden Antverpia a cornucopia, a reference to the wealth that the Scheldt has brought to the city. This copy once adorned the fireplace of the wedding hall in the town hall.

Vracht - vaste expo in het MAS Antwerpen - beenderen Reus Antigoon - Brabo legende

The Bones of Giant Antigoon

The most striking in the exhibition are these bones: a shoulder blade and rib. Fished up from the Scheldt in the 16th century. It was believed that these were the bones of Giant Antigoon from the Brabo legend. They were hung in the town hall, in the same way as they are now exhibited, on chains. We now know that they are whale bones…

In preparation for this exhibition, the bones were restored. A painting of a rider and a horse was discovered. The restorer also sees a dragon and suspects that Saint George is depicted. In the dark spot, can you see the rider and the horse’s legs below?

Vracht - vaste expo in het MAS Antwerpen - wereldbol met handelsroutes

Guided Tours

Would you like more information about this exhibition? Then book a tour of this interesting exhibition at Experience Antwerp, put my name as your preferred guide. You can also contact me directly and we’ll see how we can arrange this together.

Vracht - vaste expo in het MAS Antwerpen - overzicht tentoonstelling




Antwerp, Hanzestedenplaats 1

More information


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