Jacob Van Ruisdael Biography | Oil Paintings.

6-1629 Haarlem, NED – 3-10-1682 Amsterdam, NED

Van Ruisdael, Jacob

Jacob Isaackszoon van Ruisdael was born into a family of painters, all landscape artists. Ruisdael studied with his father Isaack van Ruisdael and his uncle Salomon van Ruysdael. He was also strongly influenced by other contemporary local Haarlem landscape painters Cornelis Vroom and Allaert van Everdingen.

The earliest date that appears on a Jacob van Ruisdael painting is 1646 when he was only seventeen years old. Two years later when he was nineteen, he was admitted to the Haarlem Guild of St. Luke. When he was living in Haarlem, from 1646 to the early 1650s, van Ruisdael's work is characterized by simple themes and the careful study of nature, including sand dunes, woods, and the different atmospheric effects. Wooded Dunes also known as Dune Landscape is an example of Ruisdael's early style from 1646. It breaks with the classic Dutch custom of portraying wide perspectives of dunes that incorporate houses and trees flanked by distant vistas. Rather, Jacob van Ruisdael places the tree-covered dunes unmistakably in the middle for everyone's attention, with a cloudscape concentrating strong light on the sandy path.

Following van Ruisdael's excursion to Germany in 1650, his landscapes assumed a more courageous personality, with shapes becoming bigger and unmistakable. A view of Bentheim Castle, is one of a dozen his depictions of this castle in Germany, almost all of which he positioned on a large hilltop. Ruisdael made numerous changes to the castle's setting since it is actually on a low hill, culminating in a 1653 version which shows Bentheim Castle on a lush wooded mountain. Also while in Germany, Ruisdael encountered watermills by the rivers for the first time, he was captivated and they became a principal subject for his painting, he was the first artist to ever paint this subject matter. From 1653 onward, Ruisdael almost entirely stopped dating his work.

In 1657, Jacob van Ruisdael moved to Amsterdam and in 1668, his name appears as a witness to the marriage of fellow artist, and his only pupil, Meindert Hobbema, Jacob van Ruisdael himself never married. When he lived and worked in Amsterdam, he added city panoramas and seascapes to his regular repertoire.

It appropriate that a Dutch windmill should be the subject of one of Ruisdael's most famous works of art. The Windmill at Wijk bij Duurstede, dated 1670, shows a riverside town about 12 miles from Utrecht. The painting's enduring popularity is measured by the postcard sales in the Rijksmuseum, Rembrandt Van Rijn's The Night Watch, Johannes Vermeer's View of Delft, and Jacob van Ruisdael's Windmill at Wijk bij Duurstede ranking third. During the late 1670s, van Ruisdael's began to paint mountain scenes, such as Mountainous and Wooded Landscape with a River.

He is considered the pre-eminent landscape painter of the Dutch Golden Age, a period of extraordinary riches and cultural achievement when Dutch painting became exceptionally popular. Jacob van Ruisdael shaped landscape painting traditions worldwide, from the English Romantics Thomas Gainsborough, J. M. W. Turner, and John Constable to the French Barbizon School, and the American Hudson River School, and influenced generations of Dutch landscape artists. Vincent van Gogh acknowledged van Ruisdael as a major influence and noteworthy impact on art, calling him brilliant. In 2014, Dunes by the Sea was auctioned in New York for the price of US$1,805,000.

Art Movement: Dutch Golden Age.
Artists Influencing Jacob van Ruisdael: Hendrick Cornelisz Vroom, Allaert van Everdingen, Isaack and Salomon van Ruysdael.
He Traveled To Germany, France.
Painters Jacob van Ruisdael Influenced: Aelbert Cuyp, Theodore Rousseau, Meindert Hobbema, Thomas Gainsborough, J. M. W. Turner, John Constable, Vincent van Gogh.
Artist Biography compiled by Albert L. Mansour at The World's Artist, with text adapted from Wikipedia.

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