This small seascape by Jan van de Cappelle shows three fishermen in the foreground, one of whom surveys the coastal scene. The low horizon leaves a great expanse of blue sky above the water. Silvery light is reflected in the water and the scene has a sense of stillness and calm.
This work was purchased for the Government Art Collection from the collection of journalist and newspaper editor Sir Bruce Stirling Ingram (1877-1963), in 1963.
Dutch painter and draftsman Jan van de Cappelle was born in Amsterdam, to a wealthy family. He is thought to have been self-taught and painted mainly calm seascapes with shipping or winter landscapes. His works are noted for their impressive sunsets and evocative reflections in water. Among Cappelle’s friends were fellow Dutch painters Simon de Vlieger, Jacob van Dorsten, Frans Hals and Rembrandt. Cappelle’s style is said to have been based on that of Vlieger and he owned nine of Vlieger’s paintings and 1,300 of his drawings, as well as works by Rembrandt, Frans Hals and others. Cappelle died in his 50s, leaving considerable wealth to his seven children. Today, his works can be found in museums throughout Europe and America.
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