CRUYL, Lieven
(b. ca. 1640, Gent, d. ca. 1720, Gent)


Flemish printmaker and architect. He studied theology, architecture, drawing and etching in Leuven. He was a priest in Wetteren near Ghent from 1660 to 1664. He was involved as an architect in the completion of the Saint Michael's Church, Ghent, the construction of which had been interrupted because of the iconoclastic troubles of the 16th century. He made a design for the unfinished western tower in a Brabantine Gothic style in 1662. The design was finally not implemented due to cost concerns.

He travelled to Rome where he resided from 1664 to 1675. He travelled in Italy and was in Venice in 1676. He spent time in France between 1680 and 1684 and returned to Ghent in 1684. He made trips to France and is recorded in Paris in 1688.

Lieven Cruyl is mainly known for his drawings and graphic work depicting cityscapes. He made series of drawings as well as individual renderings of the landmarks of Rome. Several of the drawings were later engraved by himself and others including by Giulio Testa. His drawings were dated, frequently by month, between 1664 and 1666 and convey a picture of a busy living city filled with ruins. The panoramic settings of the drawings and the precise technique are believed to have set a standard for veduta designers and painters after him such as the Dutchman Caspar van Wittel. He also made drawings of other Italian cities such as Florence and Venice and of places in Paris.

The drawings and etchings he made during his extended stays in Italy and Paris contributed to the development of the topographical views known as veduta.

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