Allaert van Everdingen

Allaert van Everdingen(christened Alkmaar, June 18, 1617 – buryed Amsterdam, November 8, 1675), was a Dutch Golden Age painter and printmaker draftsman and etcher, famous for his Scandinavian landscapes in etching and mezzotint.. He was a brother of the painters Caesar van Everdingen and Jan van Everdingen.

It would be difficult to find a greater contrast than that presented by the works of Savery and Everdingen. Savery inherited the brilliant style of the Brueghels, which he carried into the 17th century; whilst Everdingen realized the large and effective system of coloured and powerfully shaded landscape which characterises the precursors of Rembrandt. A fascination with the exotic is probably what inspired Allaert to travel himself, though it is quite within the range of probability that he acquired his approach from his drawing master, Pieter de Molijn.

Van Everdingen was born at Alkmaar, the son of a government clerk. He and his older brothers, the painters Jan and Caesar van Everdingen, according to Arnold Houbraken, were taught by Roelandt Savery at Utrecht. Allaert moved in 1645 to Haarlem, where he studied under Pieter de Molijn, and finally settled about 1657 in Amsterdam, where he died in 1675.

In 1644 Everdingen travelled to Norway and Sweden, a trip that was to have profound consequences on his art. According to his biographer Arnold Houbraken, his visit to Norway was unscheduled, but occurred when his ship, en route to the Baltic Sea, ran into a heavy storm and moored there for shelter. In the manner of Frans Post, Everdingen took advantage of this mishap by making sketches of the Norwegian landscape, which would have seemed very exotic to his Dutch countrymen. His annotated drawings document visits to the south-east Norwegian coast and to Bohusland and the Göteborg area in western Sweden. These sketches, which he later painted in his studio, became very popular, and though now scarce, exhibit a broad and sweeping mode of execution, differing but slightly from that transmitted at the dawn of the 17th century from Jan van Goyen to Salomon van Ruysdael. He returned to the Netherlands by 21 February 1645, when he married Janneke Cornelisdr Brouwers in Haarlem. He died in Amsterdam.

As far as known, Van Everdingen had no pupils. According to some sources, he was a teacher of Gerard van Edema, but there is no evidence for this. However, Houbraken states that the painter Ludolf Bakhuizen Van Everdingen asked for advice on painting in oil painting and that Van Everdingen was “striking a palette of paint and brushes in the fist.” Van Everdingen also made his studio available to him where he finished a test that would have brought 10 guilders. Besides painter Van Everdingen was also a collector of and trader in Italian, Dutch and Flemish painting.

Van Everdingen was married to Janneke Brouwers, who died in 1708 in The Golded Duck at the Kalverstraat in Amsterdam. Here on April 19, 1709, the second part of Van Everdingen’s artistry was sold, consisting of paintings of, among others, Raphael, Titian, Veronese, Liss, Holbein, Porcellis, Van Everdingen himself, Beuckelaer, Hals and Rembrandt.

Van Everdingen had three sons, Cornelis, Pieter and Jan, who according to Houbraken, all “d’a min d’ander” used the art. ”

Molijn wielded his own influence on his gifted disciple, but the school of landscape painters in Haarlem brought forth many young, talented artists who incorporated the tonal qualities of van Goyen. This can be seen in the development of Isaac van Ostade, who abandoned the genre techniques of his brother Adriaen van Ostade for the broader landscapes of the Ruisdael family. In Utrecht Allert would have also met Savery’s nephew and namesake, the landscape artist and engraver Roelant Roghman, who probably returned with him on his trips to Alkmaar, where he made many prints. Alkmaar, itself a busy trading place near Texel island, had little of the picturesque for an artist except polders and dunes or waves and sky. Accordingly, we find Allaert at first a painter of coast scenery. But on one of his expeditions he is said to have been cast ashore in Norway, and during the repairs of his ship he visited the inland valleys, and thus gave a new course to his art.

Van Everdingen is mostly known as a painter of ‘Scandinavian’ waterfalls and small forest views. He also painted seascapes, beach views and winter landscapes. His seascapes date mainly for his Scandinavian journey from 1644-1645 and adhere to the understated way of painting by Jan Porcellis and Simon de Vlieger. His earliest known work, Ships at sea in stormy weather, was dated 1640 and announces the work of Jacob van Ruisdael with his foaming waves. In his other seascapes, Van Everdingen painted mostly moving water. The painting Anchor-lying ships represent an exception to this. He also painted a few sea storms (among them one in the Museum of Arts in Künste in Leipzig and one in the Musée Condé in Chantilly), who did not submit to the Dutch Romance of the 19th century.

In his landscapes he was a follower of Hercules Seghers. He was succeeded by Jacob van Ruisdael and Wilhelm von Kobell. Especially Van Everdingen was influenced by Ruisdael in the beginning, both in his seascapes and in his waterfalls. The painting Zeegezicht bij opkomende storm van Van Everdingen was previously attributed to Van Ruisdael. Furthermore, Nicolaes Molenaer has a 1653 dated, “Scandinavian” waterfall known as Van Everdingen / Van Ruisdael.

In Copenhagen there are five paintings with Van Everdingen waterfalls. One of them was dated 1647, another 1649. In the Hermitage in St. Petersburg there is a painting from 1647 and in the Alte Pinakothek in Munich one of 1656.

In early pieces he cleverly represents the sea in motion under varied, but mostly clouded, aspects of sky. Their general intonation is strong and brown, and effects are rendered in a powerful key, but the execution is much more uniform than that of Jacob van Ruisdael. A dark scud lowering on a rolling sea near the walls of Flushing characterizes Everdingens Mouth of the Schelde in the Hermitage at St Petersburg. Storm is the marked feature of sea-pieces in the Staedel or Robartes collections; and a strand with wreckers at the foot of a cliff in the Munich Pinakothek may be a reminiscence of personal adventure in Norway. But the Norwegian coast was studied in calms as well as in gales; and a fine canvas at Munich shows fishermen on a still and sunny day taking herrings to a smoking hut at the foot of a Norwegian crag.

The earliest of Everdingen’s sea-pieces bears the date of 1640. After 1640 we meet with nothing but representations of inland scenery, and particularly of Norwegian valleys, remarkable alike for wildness and a decisive depth of tone. The masters favorite theme is a fall in a glen, with mournful fringes of pines interspersed with birch, and log-huts at the base of rocks and craggy slopes. The water tumbles over the foreground, so as to entitle the painter to the name of inventor of cascades. It gives Everdingen his character as a precursor of Jacob van Ruisdael in a certain form of landscape composition; but though very skillful in arrangement and clever in effects, Everdingen remains much more simple in execution; he is much less subtle in feeling or varied in touch than his great and incomparable countryman.

Five of Everdingen’s cascades are in the museum of Copenhagen alone: of these, one is dated 1647, another 1649. In the Hermitage at St Petersburg is a fine example of 1647; another in the Pinakothek at Munich was finished in 1656. One of his best-known masterpieces is the Norwegian glen belonging to Lord Listowel. Of his etchings and drawings there are much larger and more numerous specimens in England than elsewhere. Being a collector as well as an engraver and painter, he brought together a large number of works of all kinds and masters; and the sale of these by his heirs at Amsterdam on 11 March 1676 gives an approximate clue to the date of the painters death.

His two brothers, Jan and Caesar, were both good painters according to Houbraken, though Jan had a civil job that kept him from his hobby.