Acquisition will transform the Museum’s Dutch drawings collection
By Staff Writer
While museums may be currently closed, Brentwood art fans have something to look forward once the Getty reopens: 39 new dutch drawings from key masters of the period including Rembrandt van Rijn and Jacob Ruisdael.
The J. Paul Getty Museum announced recently the acquisition of 39 Dutch drawings, providing a survey of the outstanding artists, styles, genres, and subjects in seventeenth-century art from the Netherlands. The group includes drawings by Rembrandt van Rijn, Jacob Ruisdael, Gerrit van Honthorst, and many other artists of the “Golden Age” of Dutch art. In addition, the acquisition includes a monumental early watercolor by Piet Mondrian, a panoramic landscape view made in 1901.
“Set in motion nearly two years ago and finalized in January 2020, this major acquisition dramatically enhances our Dutch drawings collection, increasing it by a third, and placing it among the most important museum holdings in the United States,” says Timothy Potts, director of the J. Paul Getty Museum. “Several drawings represent artists who are almost never available on the market, including Cornelis Vroom, Hendrick Dubbels, Jacob Pynas, and Gerrit Pietersz, adding rarity and depth to the group, and enabling the Getty to showcase a more complete history of Dutch art.”
A selection of 18 drawn landscapes and seascapes illustrate how Dutch artists celebrated their natural environment, burgeoning economy, and national identity. Adriaen van de Velde’s The House with a Little Tower Seen from the Northeast (about 1660), for example, offers a quintessential evocation of the flat Dutch countryside framed by stretches of sky and water. Adriaen is mostly known for landscape drawings, and drawings of a single figure that he made in preparation of his paintings. He excelled in all media, including chalk and ink, pen and brush, watercolor and oil on paper.
A Cottage among Trees (about 1652 –1653), boldly rendered in grey wash over black chalk, is a prime example of a motif made famous by Jacob van Ruisdael: the half-timbered house. From 1650 throughout his long and prolific career, his landscapes are populated by countless variations of the rustic cottages he encountered on a trip to Bentheim, Germany.
Underscoring the central role played by the human figure in Dutch Art, the acquisition includes nine figure studies, genre scenes, and portraits. Young Man Leaning on a Stick (about 1629) by Rembrandt van Rijn is a moving depiction of a young beggar. With just a few deft pen lines, Rembrandt captured the humanity and humility of his subject and powerfully conveyed the bend of the beggar’s back, the turn of his foot, the messy curls of hair and ragged clothes, the fixated gaze, and laughing expression.
To learn more about the paintings click here.