VLIEGER, Simon de
(b. 1601, Rotterdam, d. 1653, Weesp)

A Dutch Man-of-War and Various Vessels in a Breeze

c. 1642
Oil on panel, 41 x 55 cm
National Gallery, London

Simon de Vlieger took his style from Porcellis (who likewise influenced Jan van Goyen). In the 1630s De Vlieger (like Van Goyen) was caught up in the tonal style, so suited to marine painting, and he gradually departed from Porcellis's tendency to paint seas in stormy wheather. As in "A Dutch Man-of-war and Various Vessels in a Breeze", his sea is usually much calmer and less threatening to the ships, the vast sky more gentle. Rarely, too, is it the high sea; the shore-line is visible on the distant horizon, and in the lower left corner a stake is ptrotruding as a discreet indication of the shore at this side. It is a wide estuary, then; ships are coming in from sea; another ship, in the distance, is riding at anchor.