Landscape with Ruined Buildings on the Left, no. 4 from an unidentified series¸Artist(s)Jan van de VeldeObject Creation Datecirca 1615Medium & Supportetching on paperDimensions
4 11/16 in x 7 ⅝ in (11.91 cm x 19.37 cm);4 11/16 in x 7 ⅝ in (11.91 cm x 19.37 cm);14 3/10 in x 19 3/10 in (36.35 cm x 49.05 cm)Credit LineGift of Jean Paul SlusserLabel copy
The most productive printmaker of Haarlem in the early seventeenth century, Van de Velde etched and engraved almost five hundred prints, of which two hundred are landscapes. His views seem to merge observation with invention. Many include ruins, to which the artist may have been attracted for their suggestions of the brevity of life or for their poetic, visual qualities.
The most productive printmaker of Haarlem in the early seventeenth century, Van de Velde etched and engraved almost five hundred prints. About two hundred of these are landscapes, many of which he designed himself, and they often include architectural ruins—including Roman, medieval, imaginary hybrids, or simply derelict buildings. The thematic role of such ruins were many: they could serve as reminders of the glories of the Dutch past, as references to the destruction of war, or to the specter of former dominance by the Roman church and the nobility, as well as to the brevity of temporal power.
The ruined buildings in the left portion of this print appear to represent a formerly prosperous manor house and may have attracted the artist’s eye both for their allusions to the vanity of earthly pursuits, a common Dutch theme, and for their poetic, visual qualities. The allusion to destruction contrasts with the harmonious calm of this scene with peasants and burghers shown in harmony.
Gallery label text by Annette Dixon, CuratorPrimary Object Classification Print Primary Object Typeintaglio printCollection AreaWesternRights
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