Mesdag, Hendrik Willem

Mesdag, Hendrik Willem

(hĕn`drĭk vĭl`əm mĕs`däkh), 1831–1915, Dutch marine painter. He gave up banking at 35 to study painting. He later lived at The Hague and was known as a painter and wealthy patron of the arts. He presented to the nation his fine collection, containing many paintings of the Barbizon school, together with a building to house it. Since 1990 the Mesdag Collection, The Hague, has been part of the Van Gogh Museum. His simple and realistic marine paintings are found in many Dutch galleries. The Return of the Fishing Boats (The Hague) is characteristic.
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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Mesdag, Hendrik Willem

 

Born Feb. 23, 1831, in Groningen; died July 10, 1915, in The Hague. Dutch marine painter.

Beginning in 1866, Mesdag studied under W. Roelofs and L. Alma-Tadema in Brussels. In 1869 he settled in The Hague. One of the leading representatives of the Hague school, Mesdag painted seascapes in which he paid attention to atmosphere and depicted the elemental states of the sea and the hardships of a fisherman’s life. He donated his collection of paintings, which included works by members of the Barbizon school, to the city of The Hague. (The collection is in the Mesdag Museum.) Mesdag’s works include The Vlissingen Dike and Summer Evening in Sheveningen (both in the Mesdag Museum, The Hague).

REFERENCE

Zilcken, P. H. W. Mesdag, the Painter of the North Sea. London, 1896.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.