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Cityscape paintings subject • artists • artworks for sale cityscape in fine art

The cityscape, a reflection of our built environment, developed into an independent genre in the Netherlands in the second half of the 17th century. It mainly developed in Amsterdam. This was probably related to the growth and prosperity of the city as the center of the powerful Republic of the Seven United Netherlands and the increasing prosperity of the merchants and city regents. They probably liked to see the city to which they owed their wealth hanging on their wall. Due to the broad demand for cityscapes, artists made it their specialty, such as Jan van der Heyden and Gerrit Adriaensz. Berckheyde. A prerequisite for success was a realistic and accurate depiction of the city. As far as can now be ascertained, these cityscapes were sometimes topographically correct, but usually the painters tinkered with a composition until an attractive whole was obtained.

In the 18th century, the genre's popularity declined somewhat, but in the 19th century it started to flourish again. One of the most important interpreters of the cityscape was the Amsterdam painter Cornelis Springer. From about 1875 onwards he painted city portraits in meticulous brushstrokes, with a town hall or rich merchant houses in the Dutch Renaissance style in the center of the image, bathed in bright sunlight. He found inspiration in the big cities and in the old fishing towns around the Zuiderzee. In doing so, he embellished reality somewhat through changes in the composition and the omission of disturbing, contemporary elements. Striking is the precise elaboration of architectural details such as frames, window divisions and ornaments, which are displayed down to the smallest parts. By depicting 16th and early 17th-century buildings, with their stepped gables and characteristic combination of red brick and sandstone moldings, he responded to the growing interest in buyers' circles for the own past of the Golden Age. The same realism and attention to old Dutch architecture is evident in the urban fantasies and portraits of Adrianus Eversen, Frederik Roosdorp, Jan Weissenbruch and Willem Koekkoek. In addition to topographically more or less accurate architectural paintings, there were also Old Dutch townscapes in which the emphasis seems to lie on the picturesque and the atmosphere. The work of the Hague set painter B.J. van Hove, twenty years older than Springer, is an example of this, as is that of his students P.G. Vertin and Charles Leickert. They provide their imaginary Dutch towns, in summer or winter, at will with the striking towers of the Oude Kerk in Delft, the Sint-Bavo and the Bakenesserkerk in Haarlem or the Grote Kerk in Alkmaar.

The idealized cityscape as described above came to an end later in the 19th century, when the painters of the Hague School proclaimed their theories about plein air painting. City chroniqueur Floris Arntzenius painted in The Hague and impressionists such as G.H. Breitner and Isaac Israels on the street in search of pieces of urban reality. In addition to the bustle of the city, Breitner also painted the alleys in the Jordaan and the silence of the Bickerseiland, near his studio. He also found typical parts of Rotterdam, which show us the city from a completely different side than the images of the never-resting port city that Johan Hendrik van Mastenbroek left us.

Typical of the painting of the Amsterdam painters born after 1860 is the need to express their own, individual in their art. Art is passion, the poet Willem Kloos expressed this point of view. This was expressed in a small group of painters in the need not to paint for trade or the public, but for themselves and like-minded people. Willem Witsen focused in his Amsterdam cityscapes from 1887 on depicting mood and the timeless beauty of the city. Like Breitner, Witsen was a photographer. He did not use his photos for his paintings, but it does explain his special way of looking. The Impressionists' cityscape influenced many painters in the 20th century, up to the present day. While some were influenced by new artistic movements such as Neo-Impressionism, Fauvism, Expressionism and Realism, these Impressionists continued on their chosen path. The complete artistic freedom that arose after 1945 eventually led to a new visual interpretation of the world of city and village.

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Cornelis Vreedenburgh | A view of a city harbour, oil on canvas, 59.2 x 73.2 cm, signed l.l. and dated 1936

Cornelis Vreedenburgh

painting • for sale

A view of a city harbour, 1936

Abraham Fresco | Street vendor, pastel on paper, 56.9 x 44.0 cm, signed l.r.

Abraham Fresco

watercolour • drawing • for sale

Street vendor

Charles Leickert | Market day in a Dutch town with left the Bank of Loan, oil on canvas, 59.5 x 49.6 cm, signed l.l.

Charles Leickert

painting • for sale

Market day in a Dutch town with left the Bank of Loan

Isaac Ouwater | View of the city gate Grote Houtpoort in Haarlem, oil on panel, 13.8 x 19.6 cm

Isaac Ouwater

painting • for sale

View of the city gate Grote Houtpoort in Haarlem

Isaac Ouwater | View of the city gate Amsterdamse Poort in Haarlem, oil on panel, 13.8 x 19.6 cm

Isaac Ouwater

painting • for sale

View of the city gate Amsterdamse Poort in Haarlem

Arjen Galema | Place Pigalle in Paris by night, oil on panel, 15.8 x 22.0 cm, signed l.r. and painted ca. 1918-1925

Arjen Galema

painting • for sale

Place Pigalle in Paris by night, ca. 1918-1925

Maurits Monnickendam | Ice cream cart and barrel organ at the Waterlooplein in Amsterdam, pastel and watercolour on paper, 38.5 x 29.0 cm, signed l.r. and dated 1925

Maurits Monnickendam

watercolour • drawing • for sale

Ice cream cart and barrel organ at the Waterlooplein in Amsterdam, 1925

Andries Scheerboom | Vegetable market at the Waag in Amsterdam, oil on canvas, 76.3 x 127.4 cm, signed l.r.

Andries Scheerboom

painting • for sale

Vegetable market at the Waag in Amsterdam

Adolf Münzer | Saint Martin procession 1934, oil on canvas, 80.8 x 66.0 cm, signed on the reverse and dated on the reverse 1934

Adolf Münzer

painting • for sale

Saint Martin procession 1934, 1934

Adrianus Eversen | -, oil on panel, 31.0 x 24.0 cm, signed l.l.

Adrianus Eversen

painting • for sale

-, ca. 1852

Willem Koekkoek | Canal in Haarlem, oil on panel, 41.7 x 56.2 cm, signed l.r. and dated  on the reverse 1877

Willem Koekkoek

painting • for sale

Canal in Haarlem, 1877

Karel Klinkenberg | A view of the Oude Gracht in Utrecht, oil on panel, 22.1 x 27.0 cm, signed l.r.

Karel Klinkenberg

painting • for sale

A view of the Oude Gracht in Utrecht

Adrianus Eversen | Sunny village view, oil on panel, 27.0 x 20.0 cm, signed l.r. with monogram

Adrianus Eversen

painting • for sale

Sunny village view

Petrus Gerardus Vertin | A town view with the Dom tower of Utrecht, oil on canvas, 34.1 x 28.6 cm, signed l.l.

Petrus Gerardus Vertin

painting • for sale

A town view with the Dom tower of Utrecht

Bart van Hove | A view of the Oude Kerk in Delft, oil on panel, 42.4 x 54.9 cm, signed l.l. and dated 1841

Bart van Hove

painting • for sale

A view of the Oude Kerk in Delft, 1841

Bart van Hove | Busy market place in a small Dutch town, oil on panel, 42.2 x 56.7 cm, signed l.r. and dated 1852

Bart van Hove

painting • for sale

Busy market place in a small Dutch town, 1852

Otto Eerelman | A peasant's parade in Oudeland, Zuid-Beveland, oil on canvas, 60.4 x 90.6 cm, signed l.l. and dated 1923

Otto Eerelman

painting • for sale

A peasant's parade in Oudeland, Zuid-Beveland, 1923

Jan Hendrik Weissenbruch | View over rooftops, watercolour on paper, 32.2 x 57.5 cm, signed l.r. with initials

Jan Hendrik Weissenbruch

watercolour • drawing • for sale

View over rooftops

Jacob Maris | Town on a river, oil on canvas, 47.1 x 75.6 cm, signed l.r. and painted ca. 1875

Jacob Maris

painting • for sale

Town on a river, ca. 1875

Adrianus Eversen | A sunny town scene (possibly Harderwijk), oil on panel, 19.2 x 15.2 cm, signed l.r. with monogram

Adrianus Eversen

painting • for sale

A sunny town scene (possibly Harderwijk)

Floris Arntzenius | A busy Spuistraat in The Hague, watercolour and gouache on paper, 50.1 x 33.9 cm, signed l.r.

Floris Arntzenius

watercolour • drawing • for sale

A busy Spuistraat in The Hague

Jan Baptist Tetar van Elven | Casino in spa, oil on panel, 36.9 x 47.0 cm, signed l.l. with initials

Jan Baptist Tetar van Elven

painting • for sale

Casino in spa

Piet van der Hem | Alley in Amsterdam, etching, 14.3 x 17.3 cm, signed l.r. and dated '30 jan. 1911'

Piet van der Hem

prints & multiples • for sale

Alley in Amsterdam

Jan van Vuuren | Village street, oil on canvas, 25.5 x 20.1 cm, signed l.r.

Jan van Vuuren

painting • for sale

Village street

Siep van den Berg | The Eendrachtskade and bascule bridge, Groningen, oil on canvas laid down on board, 40.0 x 49.9 cm, signed on the reverse

Siep van den Berg

painting • for sale

The Eendrachtskade and bascule bridge, Groningen

Johan Dijkstra | The Westerhaven in Groningen, oil on canvas, 60.1 x 92.0 cm, signed l.l. and dated '60

Johan Dijkstra

painting • for sale

The Westerhaven in Groningen, 1960

Erasmus Bernhard von Dülmen Krumpelmann | The harbour of Hoorn, black chalk and watercolour on paper, 75.8 x 57.0 cm, signed l.r.

Erasmus Bernhard von Dülmen Krumpelmann

watercolour • drawing • for sale

The harbour of Hoorn

Ko Cossaar | The Thames in the fog, oil on canvas, 51.8 x 76.5 cm, signed l.l.

Ko Cossaar

painting • for sale

The Thames in the fog


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