The High Renaissance
 
&

Mannerism

 


 

 


Maerten van Heemskerck

 
 

 

Maerten van Heemskerck

born 1498, Heemskerck, Holland
died 1574, Haarlem


one of the leading Mannerist painters in 16th-century Holland working in the Italianate manner.

He spent a period (c. 1528) in the Haarlemstudio of Jan van Scorel, then lately returned from Italy. Van Heemskerck's earliest works—“Ecce Homo” (Musee des Beaux-Arts, Ghent) and “St. Luke Painting the Portrait of the Virgin” (Frans Halsmuseum, Haarlem), both dated 1532—while adhering closely to the Romanist style of Scorel, seek to outdo it by dramatic lighting and illusionistic effects of plasticity.

From 1532 to 1535 he was in Rome, recording in innumerable sketches, some of which are preserved in Berlin, the architecture and sculpture of classical antiquity and the painting of the High Renaissance. Of the latter he directed his attention particularly to the frescoes of Michelangelo in the Sistine Chapel and those of Raphael in the Villa Farnesina.

Throughout the rest of his long career, which was spent almost exclusively in Haarlem, he drew liberally on this garnered store of Roman motifs. Among the more notable of the religious paintings of his maturity are a great “Crucifixion” altarpiece (1538–43; Linkoping cathedral, Sweden) and a “Crucifixion” (1543, Ghent). He also painted portraits, among them a self-portrait with the Colosseum (1553; Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge, Eng.) and the well-known “Portrait of a Woman at the Spinning Wheel” (Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam). From 1548 onward he produced many designs for engravings.

 

 

                 

 

 


Lamentation of Christ

1540-43
Oil on wood, 78,5 x 67,5 cm
Museum of Fine Arts, Budapest


 

 

Triumphal Procession of Bacchus

1537-38
Oil on panel, 56 x 107 cm
Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna



 

Triumphal Procession of Bacchus (detail)
1537-38
Oil on panel, 56 x 107 cm
Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna


 

Triumphal Procession of Bacchus (detail)
1537-38
Oil on panel, 56 x 107 cm
Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna

 

 


Venus and Cupid

1545
Oil on wood, 108 x 158 cm
Wallraf-Richartz Museum, Cologne
 

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