HEMESSEN, Jan Sanders van
(b. ca. 1500, Hemishem, d. 1556, Haarlem)


Netherlandish painter of religious and genre scenes and portraits. The facts of his life are obscure, but in 1524 he was made a master of the Antwerp Guild. He is reputed to have moved to Haarlem c.1550 and to have died there. His paintings illustrating popular proverbs and religious parables, and his satirical portraits, link him with Quentin Massys and Marinus van Reymerswale, and Hemessen ranks with them as one of the founders of Flemish genre painting. An example of his work is The Prodigal Son (Musées Royaux, Brussels, 1536).