HOBBEMA, Meyndert
(b. 1638, Amsterdam, d. 1709, Amsterdam)

A Watermill beside a Woody Lane

c. 1665
Oil on canvas
Royal Collection, Windsor

Hobbema was a pupil of Jacob van Ruisdael and together with him was one of the most important of the realist landscape painters. His work reveals his debt to his master, whom he followed closely in his early works to the point that many of them are impossible to distinguish from those by Ruisdael. Little by little, however, he developed his own style. His paintings depict local scenes in which the vegetation is less dense than in Ruisdael's compositions, and, generally speaking, his landscapes lack the romantic tone which characterized his master's works. The mood of Hobbema's landscapes is usually one of calm. Hobbema was especially admired by 17th- and 18th-century English collectors, and his work consequently exercised an important influence on British landscape painting.