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Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Frans Hals

Here are two 17th century portraits by Frans Hals of my son Joseph's great, great, great,... grandparents. Lucas was a wealthy "potash" dealer in Haarlem (whatever potash is).

The paintings are in the Rijksmuseum on permanent loan from the City of Amsterdam. (Frankly, I don't see any family resemblance).

1) Lucas de Clercq
http://rijksmuseum.nl/collectie/zoeken/asset.jsp?id=SK-C-556&lang=en

http://www.humanitiesweb.org/human.php?s=g&p=c&a=p&ID=6769 (another view)

2) Feyntje van Steenkiste (his wife)

http://rijksmuseum.nl/collectie/zoeken/asset.jsp?id=SK-C-557&lang=en -
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More about Frans Hals... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frans_Hals

In his later work Hals developed a cool palette, alternating blacks and grays with brilliant and sparkling color. The master reached the height of his renown in the 1630s. He painted, in these years, several groups and a number of important single portraits (e.g., Lucas de Clercq; Rijks Mus.).

His possessions were seized for debt in 1652, and difficult years followed. Four years before his death he was granted a pension by the town. In the 1630s his compositions became simpler and monochromatic effects took the place of the bright colors of the earlier paintings (Lucas de Clercq and Feyntje van Steenkiste, Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam, 1635).

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