Adriaen van de Velde: Dutch Master of Landscape, Dulwich Picture Gallery, Gallery Road,
London SE21, until 15th January 2017
This is a very special exhibition arranged in collaboration with the Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam.
Adriaen van de Velde (1636 – 1672) was the son of the celebrated marine painter Willem van de Velde the Elder (1611-1693) and brother of the equally famous marine painter Willem van de Velde the Younger (1663-1707). Adriaen however is regarded as one of the best landscape artists of the Dutch Golden Age.
Although his career lasted less than two decades his works were eagerly sought after by collectors of Dutch 17th century painting in both the 18th and 19th century. From the opening gallery onward one can see how good a painter he was and as we progress through the exhibition we see both finished works and preparatory drawings, with the latter revealing the artist’s working method.
He was so good at painting figures that fellow landscape artists, including Jacob van Ruisdael, Meindert Hobbema and Jan van der Heyden asked him to paint the figures in some of their works.
It is a delight of an exhibition and as its curator Bart Cornelis commented: This exhibition provides an opportunity for the public to get to know the work of one of those exceptionally gifted and refined artists of the Dutch Golden Age who has more recently slipped through the net of history but who deserves to be rediscovered as the great painter and draughtsman that he is. What’s more, his drawings provide a fascinating opportunity to see a seventeenth-century Dutch artist at work: we can, as it were, look over his shoulder to see how he composed his landscapes.