An analysis of genre art of the seventeenth century

Stanford University Press, ISBN cloth and paperback Review published April The burgeoning scholarly literature on seventeenth-century Dutch genre painting has seen vigorous growth since the s. Three issues repeatedly inform the discussion of Dutch scenes of daily life:

An analysis of genre art of the seventeenth century

National Portrait Gallery, London Evelyn wrote, "pictures are very common here [in the Netherlands], there being scarce an ordinary tradesman whose house is not decorated with them. In the middle of the seventeenth century some Dutch homes had thirty to fifty paintings per room, rooms which, it should be noted, were not all that spacious.

The Abundance of Paintings

The idea that the Netherlands abounded with good painting "must have become commonplace at the time. Quite likely a proud awareness of this phenomenon was already imbedded in the self-image of the prosperous Dutch burgher.

While Mundy's and Evelyn's comments were likely based on fact, it is important to note that the pictures they mentioned varied greatly in quality and price.

An analysis of genre art of the seventeenth century

A cheap engraving, for example, could be had for about a third of the price of a small fish or flower still life painting—and for about a seventh of the price of a more elaborate, high-finish banketje still life. On the other hand, a cutting-edge fijnschilder fine painting work of Gerrit Dou might be sold for 1, guilders or more, the cost of a comfortable Dutch house.

Camphuyzen…was roused because the art of painting was so well-liked that one could say nothing against it: In the works of most artists both style and content reflected taste not of the wealthy and sophisticated, but of people in moderate circumstances.

For this, international fashion could be largely ignored. This allowed the full development of native artistic species.

What, if any, effect did the unprecedented availability of artworks to a broad range of the population have on the perception of art itself? Though art had not degenerated into an overlooked object of utility, the differentiation between paintings and other objects was somehow weakened.

Unlike their colleagues from the south where history painting had originated, Dutch painters no longer encumbered by theoretical obligations of morally uplifting contents or divine spirituality.

And perhaps, this unassuming character of Dutch art, Rather than assuming the traditional guise of the learned gentleman artist that was fostered by Renaissance topoi, many painters presented themselves in a more unseemly light. Dropping the noble robes of the pictor doctus, they smoked, drank and chased women.

Dutch and Flemish artists explored a new mode of self-expression in dissolute self-portraits, embracing the many behaviors that art theorists and the culture at large disparaged. Dissolute self-portraits stand apart from what was expected of a conventional self-portrait, yet they were nonetheless appreciated and valued in Dutch culture and in the art market.

Dissolute self-portraits also reflect and respond to a larger trend regarding artistic identity in the seventeenth century, notably, the stereotype "hoe schilder hoe wilder" [the more of a painter, the wilder he is] that posited Dutch and Flemish artists as intrinsically unruly characters prone to prodigality and dissolution.

Artists embraced this special identity, which in turn granted them certain freedoms from social norms and a license to misbehave. After the iconoclasm of the Calvinists in the s, the church had all but ceased to provide commissions for painters.

The Reformed Church allowed money to be spent only for the decoration of church organs. The vacuum was barely noticed: Portraits, landscapes, seascapes, still-lives, flower painting and genre themes, which had once existed primarily as descriptive elements within history painting, became independent motifs in the early sixteenth century.

In the need to keep step with the rapidly evolving market, some painters developed more efficient techniques to increase their output and maintain affordable prices for a broader consumer base.

The invention of tonal painting made the new landscapes [e. Jan van GoyenJan Porcellis ], which were painted in this style, much cheaper to produce, making secularized demand for non-religious subjects possible on a grand scale.

Yet, "there is no evidence that these patrons commissioned specific themes. They merely bought the right to buy any picture the master chose to make. In any case, producing such expensive, time-consuming paintings had the advantage that the upper economic crust who could afford them remained largely isolated from the effects of by economic downturns, in fact, their wealth often increased.

Each category of painting was subdivided into even more specific categories. Seventeenth-century Netherlanders had developed a particular a passion for depictions of city and countryside, either real or imaginary unfound in other parts of Europe.

Landscape painters, for example, produced naturalistic views of the Dutch countryside, cityscapes, winterscapes, imaginary landscape, seascapes, Italianate, nocturnal landscapes and even birds-eye view of the sprawling Amsterdam metropolis.

Holland's ocean ports teemed with fishing and trading ships, and the tiny country's merchant fleet was almost as large as all the rest of maritime Europe's combined. The Dutch prized seascapes and insisted on accurate renderings of each hull and rigging line.

When the Delft artist became active in the late s, subject matter had largely been staked out. Dutch painters—the great part of whom would not have objected to be called craftsmen—were infatigable workers, exceptional inventors and they had an enviable knack for pictorial juggling.John Michael Montias engages in research ranging from trade in art goods in seventeenth-century Holland to industrial policy in contemporary Eastern Europe.

He is a professor of economics at Yale University, New Haven. Introduction. Following a worldwide feminist movement in the later 20th century, women became a renewed topic for art and art history, giving rise to gender analysis of both artistic production and art historical discourse.

Paragons of Virtue: Women and Domesticity in 17th Century Dutch Art [Wayne E. Franits] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. Paragons of Virtue is the first systematic analysis of domestic paintings, which were among the most popular and endearing images produced by Dutch artists during the Golden Wayne E.

Franits. Explanation. This early-seventeenth-century poem, "On my First Son," by the Englishman, Ben Jonson, is an elegy, as it commemorates a dead person. Explanation.

Art in History/History in Art: Studies in Seventeenth-Century Dutch Culture

This early-seventeenth-century poem, "On my First Son," by the Englishman, Ben Jonson, is an elegy, as it commemorates a dead person. The remarkable collection of Dutch seventeenth-century paintings in the National Gallery of Art includes works by the finest masters of the Golden Age, including Rembrandt van Rijn, Johannes Vermeer, Frans Hals, and Aelbert Cuyp.

Now numbering more than paintings, the collection comprises outstanding examples of the portraits, genre scenes.

A Brief Overview of the Dutch Art Market in the 17th century