GOYEN, Jan van
(b. 1596, Leiden, d. 1656, Den Haag)

Winter Scene near The Hague

Oil on panel, 52 x 70 cm
The Hermitage, St. Petersburg

Despite his strong reputation, van Goyen was unable to provide for his family on an artist's income. With varying degrees of success, he also traded tulip bulbs, brokered real estate, and acted as an appraiser for auction houses. Meanwhile his painting evolved, and he produced his best works in the early 1640s at The Hague. Using lighter and brighter paints and, most importantly, unifying the view through a general tone in which the grey-blue hues of sky and water predominate, van Goyen conveys well Holland's distinctive maritime atmosphere.

In the background the outlines of the large municipal buildings of The Hague (Stadthuis, Groote Kerk and Binnenhof) can be seen. The painting is signed on the boat at the left.

© Web Gallery of Art, created by Emil Krén and Daniel Marx.