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Famous Dutch Painters from Dordrecht, Ancient Capital of Holland

Part 7

The Cuyp family part 3

13. Aelbert Cuyp Part 2


Note : Please do not email me with technical questions about paintings and their age and origin because I am not an expert but I only have gathered information about the Painters from the Netherlands and specially from Dordrecht.

Dordrecht is not only known as the oldest city and ancient capital of Holland but also for the many famous painters who were born or lived in Dordrecht during the late Middle ages and later centuries.

On the next pages you can find many works from these famous painters who were responsible for many styles of paintings and they immortalized the daily life and landscapes in the 15th to 19th century. Most of their masterpieces are nowadays part of collections in museums all over the world and of which many can be seen in the local Dordrechts Museum .

Aelbert Cuyp

Dordrecht 1620 - Dordrecht 1691

Aelbert Cuyp (1620-1691) is the most famous member of the Cuyp family and now one of the most celebrated of all landscape painters, although he also painted many other subjects. He was the son and probably the pupil of Jacob Gerritsz Cuyp. His early works also show the influence of Jan van Goyen.

Aelbert was born and died at Dordrecht, but he seems to have travelled along Holland's great rivers to the eastern part of the Netherlands, and he also painted views of Westphalia. A prodigious number of pictures are ascribed to him, but his oeuvre poses many problems. He often signed his paintings but rarely dated them, and a satisfactory chronology has never been established. Although he had little influence outside Dordrecht, Cuyp had several imitators there, and some of the paintings formerly atributed to him are now given to Abraham Calraet (1642-1722), who signed himself `AC' (the same initials as Cuyp).

In 1658 Cuyp married a rich widow, and in the 1660s he seems to have virtually abandoned painting. He was almost forgotten for two generations after his death. Late 18th-century English collectors are credited with rediscovering his merits, and he is still much better represented in English collections, public and private, than in Dutch museums. His finest works--typically river scenes and landscapes with placid, dignified-looking cows--show great serenity and masterly handling of glowing light (usually Cuyp favored the effects of the early morning or evening sun). He approaches Clauded more closely in spirit than any of his Countrymen who traveled to Italy.

His earliest landscapes (from 1639) were influenced by Jan van Goyen, but he later discovered the Italianate views of the Utrecht painters Jan Both, and Saftleven. Though he traveled up the Rhine in 1651 or 1652, he seems rarely to have left Dordrecht and his work remained little known outside the town until the eighteenth century. Following the deaths of his father and uncle, his work assumed a somewhat grander character, to include equestrian portraits and extensive views.

He was buried on 15 November 1691 in the Augustijner church in Dordrecht. After his death in 1691, Cuyp's fame grew steadily. The greatest collector of his paintings was the eighteenth-century Dordrecht iron dealer and mint-master Johan van der Linden van Slingeland, who owned forty-one works by the artist. After the sale of his collection in 1785, many of these paintings entered collections in England, where Cuyp's works were greatly admired for their grandeur.

From the mid-eighteenth century onward, the enthusiasm for his paintings was so great in England and France that by 1800 no significant work by the master was left in the Netherlands. Since then, Cuyp's fame has spread even further and many of his finest works are now in American collections, among them masterpieces once owned by Van Slingeland. The present exhibition reunites more than forty of Cuyp's paintings for the first time in over two hundred years, presenting them along with some forty-five of the master's drawings.

Aelbert Cuyp in other Museums in Europe


The Louvre museum, Paris


View on Cleves

Aelbert Cuyp
Black, graphite, gray wash watercolor 15,8 x 24,9 cm
Musée du Louvre, Paris


View of Dordrecht Groothoofdspoort

Aelbert Cuyp
Black, brown wash, watercolor 13,7 x 26,4 cm
Musée du Louvre, Paris


View of Castle Purmerend

Aelbert Cuyp
Black wash watercolor 11,5 x 23 cm
Musée du Louvre, Paris


Landscape near Rhenen

Aelbert Cuyp, c. 1650-55
Oil on canvas, 170 x 229 cm
Musée du Louvre, Paris


Boats on the estuary of the Hollands Diep river near Dordrecht

Aelbert Cuyp
Oil on canvas 107 x 146 cm
Musée du Louvre, Paris


Portrait of a boy and the young Bergere Chevre

Aelbert Cuyp
Oil on canvas 125 x 103,5 cm
Musée du Louvre, Paris


Departure for the promenade on a horse

Aelbert Cuyp, c. 1665
Oil on canvas 119 x 152,5 cm
Musée du Louvre, Paris


Landscape with three Cavaliers

Aelbert Cuyp
Oil on canvas 117 x 182 cm
Musée du Louvre, Paris

Other Cities in France


Rest in the Camp

Aelbert Cuyp, c. 1660
Oil on canvas 97 × 130 cm
Musée des Beaux Arts, Rennes


The Groothoofdspoort in Dordrecht from the West

Aelbert Cuyp
Black chalk, gray wash 18.3 x 31.1 cm
Collection Frits Lugt. Institut Néerlandais.. Paris


The Hermitage, St. Petersburg


View of Schravendeel

Aelbert Cuyp, c. 1645
Black chalk, brush and brown and yellowish-green wash, gum-arabic 19.3 x 31.1 cm
The Hermitage, St. Petersburg


Landscape with a Road on the Edge of a Forest

Aelbert Cuyp, 1642/44
Black chalk, brush and grey wash 18.5 x 31 cm
The Hermitage, St. Petersburg


The Dairy Maid

Aelbert Cuyp, 1650s
Oil on canvas, 106 x 172 cm
The Hermitage, St. Petersburg


Sea by Moonlight

Aelbert Cuyp, c. 1648
Oil on panel 77 x 107.5 cm
The Hermitage, St. Petersburg


Sunset over the River

Aelbert Cuyp, 1650s
Oil on panel 78.5 x 53 cm
The Hermitage, St. Petersburg



Utrecht with the Vecht River and the Pellekussenpoort

Aelbert Cuyp
Black chalk, gray wash, water-colored in green, traces of pen and gray ink and some white Body-color. 17.6 x 30.7 cm
Staatliche Museen zu Berlin


River Landscape with Bridge

Aelbert Cuyp, 1640
Oil on panels. 40.3 x 54.9 cm
Städelsches Kunstinstitut, Framkfurt am Main Germany


River Scene with Milking Woman

Aelbert Cuyp, c. 1646
Oil on wood, 48,3 x 74,6 cm
Staatliche Kunsthalle, Karlsruhe


Path between Trees

Aelbert Cuyp
Black chalk, gray wash, brushed with gum arabic. 17.7 x 29.5 cm
Städelsches Kunstinstitut, Frankfurt am Main Germany

Other Countries in Europe



Domestic Fowl

Aelbert Cuyp
Oil on oak panel, 44,5 x 54,5 cm
Groeninge Museum, Bruges


Rooster and Hens

Aelbert Cuyp
Oil on panel, 48 x 45 cm
Museum voor Schone Kunsten, Ghent


Pasture with cows and shepherds

Aelbert Cuyp, 1641/43
Oil on panel 49 x 74 cm
Residenzgalerie Salzburg

This landscape poetry is one of the most significant examples of the early works of the artist, probably from 1641 to 1643. Soft sunlight meets the sky, air and earth. Between gnarled oak, which is to be that they have some weather have survived, the honey-colored grazing ground. With expressive handwriting, the artists short, powerful strokes and pasty applied the structured surface in the foreground and middle ground. In the foreground cows are resting in the shade. Two shepherds with their dog have established themselves besides an oak. Under the bright, high clouds sky opens the image space to low-lying horizon and the sea. Through the horizon line of the architecture of the Utrecht Maria-church. The remote view confuse the diffuse light background, fills the room with wide screen. The brownish-yellow clay changes here in a soft white, bright in the gray clouds of lively game goes on. Cuyp composed in consideration of light and air prospect of a tranquil idyll. He created a piece of Holland, which invites the viewer to pause, to the senses through the allegorical content of the image with religious, political and economic associations, but also about light and space as an image event itself to be effective.


Cows in the Water

Aelbert Cuyp
Panel, 59 x 74 cm
Museum of Fine Arts, Budapest


The meeting of David and Abigail

Aelbert Cuyp
Oil on canvas 154,5 x 207,5 cm
Kunstmuseum Basel


Thunderstorm over Dordrecht

Aelbert Cuyp, C.1640-45
Oil on oakwood. 77.5 x 107 cm
Bührle Collection, Zurich

This is Dordrecht in its plain, the home city of the painter, he frequently depicted it in the background of his pictures. The massive church is the Grote Kerk; farther to the left is the town-hall. From the left, heavy grey rain clouds sweep across the picture. Rain is falling in sheets (left of the church). To the right, the sky is still pale-blue. Lightning is striking, in precisely observed, thick yellow streaks and not in naively imagined zig-zags.

Museums in the USA

The National Gallery, Washington DC


River Landscape with Cows

Aelbert Cuyp, c. 1645/50
Oil on panel 68 x 90.2 cm
National Gallery of Art, Washington DC


Horsemen and Herdsmen with Cattle

Aelbert Cuyp, c. 1655/60
Oil on canvas 120 x 171.5 cm
National Gallery of Art, Washington DC


Lady and Gentleman on Horseback

Aelbert Cuyp, c. 1655, reworked 1660/65
Oil on canvas 123 x 172 cm
National Gallery of Art, Washington DC


The Maas at Dordrecht

Aelbert Cuyp, c. 1650
Oil on canvas, 1.15 x 1.70 cm
National Gallery of Art, Washington DC

Cuyp's masterful depiction of Dordrecht differs extensively from Van Goyen's calm and serene view of this island city. Here the river Maas is the focus of great activity; in the foreground a dignitary dressed in a black jacket with an orange sash has just arrived at a large sailing ship. He is greeted by a distinguished looking gentleman who stands among numerous other figures, including a man beating a drum. On the left a second rowboat approaches, carrying other dignitaries and a trumpeter who signals their impending arrival. Most of the ships of the large fleet anchored near the city have their sails raised and flags flying as though they are about to embark. The early morning light, which floods the tower of the great church and creates striking patterns on the clouds and sails, adds to the dramatic character of the scene.


Herdsmen Tending Cattle

Aelbert Cuyp, c. 1655/60
Oil on canvas 66 x 87.6 cm
National Gallery of Art, Washington DC

The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York


Piping Shepherds

Aelbert Cuyp, c. 1643
Oil on canvas 90.8 x 119.4 cm
Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

The figures resemble those painted by the artist's father, Jacob Gerritsz. Cuyp, but the canvas is not one of their collaborative efforts.


Young Herdsmen with Cows

Aelbert Cuyp, ca. 1650
Oil on canvas 112.1 x 132.4 cm
Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

Cuyp was the most talented member of a family of painters in Dordrecht. He was influenced in the early 1640s by the Haarlem landscapists Jan van Goyen and Salomon van Ruysdael, and then by Jan Both, who returned to his native Utrecht about 1642 after a few years in Italy. These sources combine in this canvas of about 1650 to transport a corner of Dutch dairy land to the Arcadian Countryside of Claude Lorrain.


Children and a Cow

Aelbert Cuyp, 1635/39
Oil on panel 43.8 x 54.6 cm
Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York


Cows and Herdsman by a River

Aelbert Cuyp, 1650s
Oil on oak panel 50.17 cm x 74.3 cm
The Frick collection, New York


Landscape with Trees

Aelbert Cuyp
Black chalk, gray wash, watercolored in brown, yellow, and green, partly brushed with gum arabic 18.7 x 30.8 cm
Metropoitan Museum of Art, New York

Cuyp's looped and choppy lines, plumped up with touches of color, bring us the beauty of the Dutch Countryside in summer, when warm light flickers through twigs and foliage. Cuyp was probably in his early twenties when he made this fine sheet. It belongs to a group of drawings executed in and around Utrecht, his mother's hometown.


Starting for the Hunt

Aelbert Cuyp c. 1653
Oil on canvas 109.9 x 156.2 cm
Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

Michiel (1638-1653) and Cornelis Pompe van Meerdervoort (1639-1680) with Their Tutor and Coachman. Inventories of the castle of Meerdervoort made in 1680 and 1749 indicate that Cuyp painted two boys of the wealthy Pompe van Meerdervoort family of Dordrecht with their tutor Caulier and the coachman Willem. It must have been painted by1653, the year of Michiel's death.


Dordrecht Viewed from the North, with a Windmill in the Foreground

Aelbert Cuyp
Black chalk, gray wash, watercolored with green, some brown chalk. 18.2 x 36.8 cm
Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York


Landscape with the Flight into Egypt

Aelbert Cuyp c. 1645
Oil on wood 45.7 x 58.1 cm
Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

This imaginary Mediterranean view is reminiscent of Jan Both, who returned from Rome to Utrecht around 1642. Cuyp probably painted it about a decade later.

The Frick collection, New York


Dordrecht sunrise

Aelbert Cuyp, c. 1650
Oil on canvas 102 x 161 cm
The Frick collection, New York 

This early morning scene, with its golden expanse of sky and water, is one of Cuyp's most ambitious attempts to render light and atmosphere. Cuyp depicts the port city of Dordrecht as seen from the north, looking across the river Merwede. Most prominent among the recognizable buildings is the Groote Kerk, the church on the horizon to the left of the large boat in the foreground.

Other Cities in the USA


A View of the Maas at Dordrecht

Aelbert Cuyp
Oil on panel 19 3/4 x 42 1/4 in
The Getty museum, Los Angeles

A boat divides this panoramic river view, with the town of Dordrecht on the right, where the river Maas meets the sea, and the city of Zwijndrecht opposite. Although the painting looks as if it were painted at the scene, Aelbert Cuyp executed the canvas in his studio, using studies previously made outdoors. By employing an extreme horizontal format, he emphasized the flatness of the land under the wide expanse of sky. The low horizon opens out to a vast, cloud-laden sky, evoking the changeability of coastal weather. Cuyp included precise details that convey the particularities of the specific place portrayed: the boat's rigging and flag and the towns' windmills, houses, and churches.


View of the Rhine Valley (recto; View of the Heideberger Mill Near Cleves (verso)

Aelbert Cuyp
Black chalk and graphite 5 3/16 x 9 5/16 in
The Getty museum, Los Angeles


The Flight into Egypt

Aelbert Cuyp, late 1650s
Oil on panel 67.95 x 90.81 cm
Los Angeles County Museum of Art


View of the Maas near Dordrecht

Aelbert Cuyp, c.1645
Oil on panel 49.53 x 76.2 cm
Los Angeles County Museum of Art


Panoramic Landscape with Shepherds

Aelbert Cuyp, 1640/45
Oil on panel 76.8 x 107 cm
Saint Louis Art Museum


Landscape with Horse Trainers

Aelbert Cuyp, 1650
Oil on canvas. 118.7 x 170.2 cm
The Toledo Museum of Art, Toledo Ohio


The Valkhof at Nijmegen from the Northwest

Albert Cuyp, c. 1650
Oil on Cavas 19 1/4 x 29 in.
Museum of Art, Indianapolis


The Baptism of the Eunuch

Aelbert Cuyp, c. 1642
Oil on Canvas 42 1/2 x 59 1/2 in.
The Menil Collection, Houston


Landscape with Maid milking a cow

Aelbert Cuyp, c. 1655
Oil on canvas 101,6 x 134,6 cm
Detroit Institute of Arts, Detroit


Landscape with the Ruins of Rijnsburg Abbey

Aelbert Cuyp, c. 1645
Oil on canvas 102,2 x 141 cm
Detroit Institute of Arts, Detroit 



A Herd of Cows with a Herdsman and a Rider

Aelbert Cuyp, 1665/70
Oil on panel 90 x 120 cm
National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa

Cuyp was influenced first by the simplified and often monochromatic palette of Jan van Goyen, and later by the Italianate landscapes of Jan Both. He is perhaps best known for his ability to illuminate selectively and with great mastery various parts of his landscapes. Here, with one of his favorite subjects, herdsmen and cattle, Cuyp carries a golden haze of sunlight over the figures in a wonderful play of light and shadow. 

Private collections all over the world



Orpheus Charming the Animals

Aelbert Cuyp, c. 1640
44 1/2 x 65 3/4 in.
Private collection, Boston



The Windmills at Kinderdijk (recto)

Aelbert Cuyp
Black chalk, gray wash, watercolored in brown and red, heightened with white 13.7 x 18.9 cm
Private collection, USA


Ice Scene before the Huis te Merwede at Dordrecht

Aelbert Cuyp, 1650
Oil on panel. 64 x 89 cm
Private collection


Landscape with Shepherds and Shepherdesses

Aelbert Cuyp, 1643/45
Oil on panel 77.5 x 107.5 cm
Private collection, Belgium


A Farm with Cottages and Animals

Aelbert Cuyp, 1642/43
Oil on canvas 105 x 155 cm
Private collection


Bulls on a Riverbank

Aelbert Cuyp, 1650
Oil on panel 59 x 72 cm
Private collection


Goatherd in landscape, a Distant View of Amsterdam

Aelbert Cuyp, c.1650
Oil on panel 78 x 106 cm
Commercial Gallery Peter Nahum at The Leicester Galleries.


Young Sportsman

Aelbert Cuyp, c.1646
Oil on canvas 129,6 x 98,5 cm
Commercial Gallery Peter Nahum at The Leicester Galleries.


Two Horsemen on a Ridge

Aelbert Cuyp, c. 1646
Oil on canvas 13 x 16 3/4 in.
Private collection, New York


Hunter in a river landscape

Aelbert Cuyp
Private collection


Barges close-hauled in light Airs on a River

Aelbert Cuyp
Oil on panel 30,8 x 42,9 cm
Private collection


A view of Dordrecht from the end of the Papendrechtse bank of the river Noord

Aelbert Cuyp
Black chalk, brush and brown ink, grey, brown and yellow wash, the foreground heightened with gum arabic, fragmentary watermark WR, pen and brown and black ink framing lines
Private collection

This large sketch was last auctioned in 2001 and was sold for$2.866.000.


A river Landscape with Peasants unloading a Barge, Dordrecht beyond

Aelbert Cuyp
Oil on panel 68,8 x 90,2 cm
Private collection


A River Landscape with a Drover herding Cattle over a Bridge and Shepherds at Rest by ruined Buildings

Aelbert Cuyp
Oil on panel 49,5 x 74,6 cm
Private collection


Gentlemen and a Lady on a Track at the Edge of a Wood with the Artist sketching in the Foreground

Aelbert Cuyp
Oil on canvas 101 x 140 cm
Private collection


Dordrecht Harbor by Moonlight

Aelbert Cuyp, 1644
Oil on canvas
Private collection

Cuyp-Albert-Landscape with-Hunt

Landscape with a Hunt

Aelbert Cuyp, 1650/55
Oil on canvas, 109 x 150 cm
Private collection

The painting represents a landscape with a hunt and a portrait of a youth with his tutor. This is a typical Cuyp painted in his grandest manner, and dating from the most fruitful period of his career. It is pictures of this sort that established his reputation beyond his native town Dordrecht, and that made him so popular with English (and Scottish and Irish) aristocratic collectors in the 18th century, with a wider circle of merchant-collectors in the 19th, and with American collectors in the 20th century.


The Grote Kerk in Dordrecht from the Southwest (verso)

Aelbert Cuyp
Black chalk, gray wash, watercolored in brown and red, heigthtened with white. 13.7 x 18.9 cm
Private collection, USA.


The Valkhof at Nijmegen from the East

Aelbert Cuyp, 1650
Oil on panel 48.3 x 74 cm
Private collection

Note : It is strange that there is no "real" statue for our most famous painter Aelbert Cuyp (even in Amsterdam there is the famous "Albert Cuyp market" dedicated to him), I hope that once there will be one in his native city, Dordrecht, to honor him and I hope it will be a large one.

Albert Cuyp Dordrecht

Statue of Aelbert Cuyp in Dordrecht

ugly, ugly, ugly !!! and not on a square ?

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