Willem Kalf

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Kalf, Willem


Christened Nov. 3, 1619, in Rotterdam; died July 31, 1693, in Amsterdam. Dutch painter.

Kalf worked in France from about 1640 to 1645 and in Amsterdam after 1653. He created paintings that were modest in size and motif, but full of mood, depicting poor kitchens and backyards (for example, The Yard of a Peasant House, the Hermitage, Leningrad), as well as spectacular still lifes with expensive utensils and southern fruits (for example, Breakfast, Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam). Kalf’s brilliant virtuosity as a still-life painter was revealed in the classic fineness of the composition, a subtle feeling for the uniqueness of each object, the refinement and richness of chiaroscuro and color nuances, and the skillful juxtaposition of objects differing in color and texture.


Gelder, H. E. van, W. C. Heda, and A. van Beyeren. W. Kalf Amster-dam [1941].
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4) Willem Kalf, Nature morte avec coupe en porcelaine de Chine, 1662, Amsterdam; Agnolo Bronzino, Lucrezia Pianciatichi, vers 1540, Florence; Jan Van Eyck, Les epoux Arnolfinl, 1434, Bruges.
Pointing to a still-life by Willem Kalf of fruit and drinking glasses that hangs on the opposite wall, he comments 'the corner of the carpet that covers the table in the painting is slightly blurred.
We then became good friends, quickly discovering that we admired the same artists--Rembrandt, Jakob van Ruisdael, and Willem Kalf, whom he called, "the Rembrandt of still life painters.
Four hundred years after Dutch still life artist Willem Kalf painted vessels of wine and plates of fruit, realistic still life art is still making its mark on the art world.
They are like watery reminders of Dutch still lifes in this genre, say one by Willem Kalf (you might want to drop by the exhibition of Dutch and Flemish paintings from the Hermitage, and check Ting's way with fruit against Kalf's The Dessert-which incidentally shows fruit in a dell bowl patterned after a piece of Chinese porcelain).