(b. ca. 1584, Ghent, d. 1632, Zoeterwoude)

Vessels in a Strong Wind

c. 1630
Oil on panel, 42 x 62 cm
Private collection

Three freighters of the same type, with one mast and a spritsail, fix their course on a place on the horizon. On the right sail and Indiaman and a small sailing boat, on the left a rowing boat. Porcellis lent the necessary depth to the painting by placing the three freighters in a row behind each other. The depiction is dominated by the magnificently rendered cloud formations and the white crests on the waves. Whereas the traditional seascape was usually a 'portrait of a ship or a historical account of a naval battle, the important element here is the portrayal of sky and water.