A History of Art for Beginners and Students

A History of Art for Beginners and Students

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Excerpt: ... importance after the time of Rubens and his followers whom we call Flemish artists. There were good painters, certainly, belonging to the schools of Flanders; but these schools had reached their highest excellence and were on the decline, and so we pass to the Dutch school, or the painters of Holland. There was doubtless a very early school of Dutch painters, dating back to the fourteenth century even; but the records of it are so imperfect, and so few pictures remain from its early days, that for our purpose it is best to pass over the fifteenth century and say that during the sixteenth century the painters of Holland gave up the painting of Pg 177 sacred subjects very largely, and began to take on the characteristics of what is generally known now as the Dutch School. This school is distinguished for its portraits, which form a large and important part of its painting; next for its domestic scenes, which are realistic and true to life in an astonishing degree. At the beginning of the seventeenth century Holland had obtained a position as a nation that freed its artists from the influence of the Romish Church and the fear of the Inquisition, and they soon used their freedom to establish a national art, and one which became very important to the world. Franz Hals (1584-1666) was the most noteworthy of the portrait-painters. He was born at Mechlin, but passed most of his life at Haarlem. There was a custom in Holland of painting portraits of the members of guilds and societies in groups, and some such works of his at Haarlem are very fine. I have told a story of his rapid manner in the sketch of Vandyck. He was the first master to introduce that free, bold, sleight-of-hand manner which was afterward used by the Dutch masters, and is so strong in its effect. This painter led a merry, careless life. His portraits of single heads or figures are rare, and his small genre subjects still more so. In the Hshow more

Product details

  • Paperback | 90 pages
  • 189 x 246 x 5mm | 177g
  • Rarebooksclub.com
  • United States
  • English
  • black & white illustrations
  • 1236724461
  • 9781236724465