MAES, Nicolaes
(b. 1634, Dordrecht, d. 1693, Amsterdam)


Dutch painter. In about 1648 he became a pupil of Rembrandt in Amsterdam, staying there until 1654 when he returned to his native town Dordrecht. In his early years he concentrated on genre pictures, rather sentimental in approach, but distinguished by deep glowing colours he had learnt from his master. Old women sleeping, praying, or reading the Bible were subjects he particularly favoured.

In the 1660s, however, Maes began to turn more to portraiture, and after a visit to Antwerp around the middle of the decade his style changed dramatically. He abandoned the reddish tone of his earlier manner for a wider, lighter and cooler range (greys and blacks in the shadows instead of brownish tones), and the fashionable portraits he now specialized in were closer to van Dyck than to Rembrandt. In 1673 he moved permanently to Amsterdam and had great success with this kind of picture.

Maes was a fairly prolific painter and is well represented in, for example, the National Gallery, London, and the museum at Dordrecht.