Salomon van Ruysdael

Salomon van Ruysdael

pseudonym: -

birth data

date of birth: um 1600

place of birth: Naarden

death data

date of death: 1670

death: Haarlem


Salomon van Ruysdael was born at the beginning of the 17th century in Naarden in north Holland. In 1623 he joined the Haarlem Guild of St. Luke (as Salomon de Gooyer). He gained a reputation as a landscape painter, lived well off of it and climbed the ranks of the Guild of St. Luke, becoming Commissioner and in 1648 Dean. The first works of his early period shortly after the mid 1620s were winter landscapes adopting the style of Esaias van de Velde. Even though Ruysdael followed his colleagues stylistically, his painting became progressively freer and more relaxed, with diagonal compositions, an increasingly bright, high-contrast colour scheme, and light brushstrokes. In the 1630s Ruysdael preferred dune and beach scenes, channel overviews, and river landscapes as his themes. However, he became particularly famous in the late 1640s and 50s for his river views. These silvery shimmering river views are considered the most outstanding masterpieces of the artist. In his late works Ruysdael starts to use more colour contrast and stronger shapes are added. For example, the sky is painted in deeper, richer colours as well as trees and bulky architectural elements are introduced to the composition. Furthermore, his brushstroke becomes wider and crude which gives his paintings a dramatic, almost impressionistic character. In this late period, Ruysdael also painted some still lives. Nowadays he is considered one of the most important landscape painters of the Dutch Baroque period and is represented with his works in numerous international museums, including the National Gallery in London, the Alte Pinakothek in Munich and the Kunsthalle in Hamburg.