QUELLINUS, Artus I
(b. 1609, Antwerpen, d. 1668, Antwerpen)
Portrait of Johan de Witt1665
Marble, height 95 cm
Dordrechts Museum, Dordrecht
During his long stay in Amsterdam Quellinus received many commissions from Amsterdam patrons. Among the most important are the marble portrait busts of Burgomaster Andries de Graeff and the Grand Pensionary, Johan de Witt, in which realism is harmonized with classicist distinction.
Johan de Witt (1623-1672) was the Grand Pensionary of Holland. In this capacity he was for many years the most powerful statesman in the Dutch Republic. The bust of the politician, who at this time was still powerful and influential, is stately and yet it also exudes a natural nonchalance.