Witte, Emanuel de

Witte, Emanuel de

(āmä`no͞oĕl də vĭt`ə), 1617–92, Dutch painter. Witte's paintings of architecture, genregenre
, in art-history terminology, a type of painting dealing with unidealized scenes and subjects of everyday life. Although practiced in ancient art, as shown by Pompeiian frescoes, and in the Middle Ages, genre was not recognized as worthy and independent subject matter
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 scenes, seascapes, and portraits were influenced by the work of ElsheimerElsheimer, Adam
, 1578–1610?, German painter. After studying in Frankfurt, Munich, and Venice, he settled in Rome and worked for Pope Paul V. He painted small pictures on copper.
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. Witte excelled at moody, majestic paintings of church interiors (e.g., Interior of a Gothic Church; Rijksmus.). He possessed a melancholy nature that ultimately drove him to suicide.

Witte, Emanuel De

 

Born circa 1617, in Alkmaar; died 1692, in Amsterdam. Dutch painter. Worked in Rotterdam, Delft, and Amsterdam.

De Witte developed under the influence of C. Fabritius. He painted church interiors, impressive in their profound and serious moods and poetic sense of light and space (Interior of a Catholic Church, 1668, Mauritshuis, The Hague; The Inside of a Church, the Hermitage, Leningrad), and also fish-market scenes in port squares (The Market in the Port, circa 1668-69, Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts, Moscow; Market, 1679, Museum of Fine Arts, Leipzig). De Witte’s crowded market scenes are distinguished by the breadth and dynamism of treatment of space, fusing elements of genre, landscape, and still-life painting. The cold gray tone of De Witte’s paintings is enriched by color contrasts, strong high-lights, and subtle reflexes. De Witte’s work (he is one of the last Dutch realists of the 17th century), with its democratic feeling and dramatic tensions, was in sharp contrast with the tastes of bourgeois society; conflicts with bourgeois society ended in the suicide of the artist, who had become a pauper.

REFERENCE

Manke, I. Emanuel de Witte. Amsterdam, 1963.
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