Jozef Israëls Netherlands
1-27-1824 Groningen, NED – 8-12-1911 Scheveningen, NEDBack to Artist IndexView Artists Paintings
Jozef Israëls was born in Groningen, of Jewish parents. His father, Hartog Abraham Israëls, intended for him to be a businessman, and it was only after a determined struggle that he was allowed to embark on an artistic career. He studied initially from 1835 to 1842 at the Minerva Academy in his home town Groningen. He continued his studies in Amsterdam, studying at the State Academy for Fine Arts he was a pupil of Jan Kruseman. From 1845 until 1847 he was in Paris, working in the history painter Picot's studio and taking classes at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts under James Pradier, Horace Vernet and Paul Delaroche.
Jozef Israëls has often been compared to Jean-François Millet. As artists, even more than as painters in the strict sense of the word, they both, in fact, saw in the life of the poor and humble a motive for expressing with peculiar intensity their wide human sympathy; but Millet was the poet of placid rural life, while in almost all Israels' pictures there is some piercing note of woe.
Jozef Israëls began with historical and dramatic subjects in the romantic style of the day. By chance, after an illness, he went to recruit his strength at the fishing-town of Zandvoort near Haarlem, and there he was struck by the daily tragedy of life. Thenceforth he was possessed by a new vein of artistic expression, sincerely realistic.
Among his more important subsequent works are The Zandvoort Fisherman, The Silent House (which gained a gold medal at the Brussels Salon, 1858) and Village Poor.
In 1862 Jozef Israëls achieved great success in London with his Shipwrecked and The Cradle, two pictures described as the most touching pictures of the exhibition.
Movement: Barbizon School
Influences: Jan Kruseman, James Pradier, Horace Vernet Paul Delaroche
Traveled: France, England, Netherlands
Influenced: George Paul Chalmers, Robert McGregor