This broad, tranquil, mountainous landscape with a magnificently coloured sky at sunset sums up Dutch Classicist, Arcadian painting. Frederik de Moucheron had found his inspiration for this bucolic scenery while travelling in the late 1650s in the present-day French department of the Isère, between Lyon and Grenoble. Back in Holland, he lived in Amsterdam, where he used excellent painters to add figures in his paintings, here Johannes Lingelbach, who had returned to Amsterdam in 1650 from a long sojourn in Paris (1642 – 1644) and Rome (1644 – 1650).
About Frederik de Moucheron
Emden 1633 – 1686 Amsterdam
Painter of Italianate landscapes.
De Moucheron was born in a Dutch family of French origin in Emden, a German town in East Frisia, just North of the Dutch Republic.
He arrived in the early 1650s in Amsterdam, where he became a pupil of the Italianate landscape painter Jan Asselijn. Asselijn had travelled to France (Paris and Lyon) and to Rome, where he had lived between circa 1635 and 1644. Although Asselijn passed already away at the end of September 1652 he had a profound influence on our painter.
In 1655, at the age of 22, de Moucheron travelled over Antwerp to Paris and to Lyon. He stayed three years in France (1656 – 1659), before returning to Amsterdam. Shortly after his arrival he married during the summer of 1659 Mariecke de Jouderville, daughter of Isaac de Jouderville (1612 – 1645/1648) the second pupil of Rembrandt.
De Moucheron seems to have remained for the rest of his life in Amsterdam, although he is documented in 1671 in Rotterdam.
Just one of his eleven or twelve children, Isaac (1667 – 1744), studied painting under Frederik and became also an important Italianate landscape painter.
About our painting
De Moucheron never made it to Italy, but he did travel South to Lyon and apparently even to Grenoble. He therefore did study Southern and Alpine landscapes, although his Italianate, bucolic inspiration was therefore not Italian, but French.
His son Isaac travelled (1694 – 1697) also to France, but he did make it to Italy: to Bologna and to Rome.
Frederik de Moucheron used several excellent staffage painters to paint the figures in his landscapes: Dirck Helmbreker, Johannes Lingelbach, Adriaen van de Velde and Nicolaes Berchem.
About Late Baroque Arcadian painting
In several European countries the Baroque period ended with a French inspired, Classical movement: the earlier, dramatic realism was replaced by an idealised, decorative vision of nature and of reality. This Arcadia stood for an unspoiled, harmonious, Mediterranean nature, uncorrupted by civilization. It was regarded as unattainable or as a lost. The ancient Greek province of Arcadia was known for its mountainous geography and sparse population.
Arcadia became an idealised phantasy dreamland in poetry. Best known are:
- the popular pastoral tragicomedy “il pastor fido” by Battista Guarini (1590);
- the translation in Dutch by Karel van Mander of the “Bucolics” of the Roman poet Virgil (1597);
- the famous play “Granida” by Pieter Cornelisz. Hooft (1605).
Utrecht and Amsterdam were the Dutch centres of Arcadian painting.
About Johannes Lingelbach
Dutch painter of German origin
Frankfurt am Main 1622 – 1674 Amsterdam
Important painter of landscapes and of genre scenes.
He is best known for his views of Rome and for his harbour scenes.
Lingelbach was above all a gifted figure painter and therefore an important staffage (figure) painter (staffageur) for numerous Dutch landscape painters, such as Abraham Beerstraaten, Jan Hackaert, Jacob de Heusch, Meindert Hobbema, Jan van Kessel, Phillips Koninck, our Frederik de Moucheron, Jacob van Ruisdael, Jan Wijnants and many others.
Lingelbach arrived in 1634 in Amsterdam at the age of twelve with his parents from Frankfurt in Germany. He remained in Amsterdam until 1641. He is said to have already started working here as a painter in 1637, at the early age of fifteen. It is not known whom he studied under.
Johannes’ father was reportedly a tailor. After his arrival in Amsterdam he ran first the Old Labyrinth, from 1648 onwards the New Labyrinth (‘Nieuw Doolhof’), a pleasure garden with automated diversions, that could move or play music, depicting biblical and mythological scenes.
According to Arnold Houbraken (1660 – 1719), who published in 1718 his famous “De groote schouburgh der Nederlantsche konstschilders en schilderessen”, a biography of all important Dutch painters, our painter lived in Paris from 1642 until 1644, and in Rome from 1644 until 1650. His earliest dated paintings are from 1650.
From 1650 until his death in 1674 he remained in Amsterdam. He got married here in 1653 and had nine children.
During his Roman years our painter was strongly influenced by Pieter van Laer (1599 – probably 1642), after his return in Amsterdam by Philips Wouwerman (1619 – 1668) and also by Jan Baptist Weenix (1621 – 1660/61).
Lingelbach was one of the most important Dutch painters of the second generation of ‘Bentveughels’ (Nordic painters) in Rome.
Why should you buy this painting?
Because you enjoy the atmosphere of ancient English country houses, where one still often encounters these serene, majestic Arcadian landscapes, that originally had decorated the houses of Dutch merchants.