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Goldenes Zeitalter : Holländische…
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Goldenes Zeitalter : Holländische Gruppenporträts aus dem Amsterdams… (2010)

by Sabine Haag

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English Description: Group portraits are an exceptional form of Dutch painting that particularly took hold in the burgeoning metropolis of Amsterdam. This volume focuses on the 17th century, the "Golden Age" of Dutch painting, and 11 famous group portraits that perfectly capture the essence of Dutch society at that time. The group portraits were commissioned for special occasions and displayed prominently as commemorations on the premises of a variety of institutions that played an important role in the political and economic life of the city. Painters include Adriaen Backer, Frans Badens, Ferdinand Bol, Gerbrand van den Eeckhout, Govert Flinck, Bartholomeus van deer Helst, Nicolaes Eliasz Pickenoy, and Dirck van Santvoort. German text. German description:Das Gruppenporträt stellt eine herausragende holländische Bildform dar, die besonders in der aufbluehenden Metropole Amsterdam Fuá fasste. Im Zentrum des Katalog-Buches steht das 17. Jahrhundert, das so genannte "Goldene Zeitalter" und elf beruehmte Gruppenporträts, die das damalige Wesen der holländischen Gesellschaft vollkommen ausdruecken. Regelmäáig lieáen sich Mitglieder des vermögenden Stadtbuergertums in voller Lebensgröáe vereint darstellen, wie sie von Amts wegen gemeinsame Aufgaben wahrnehmen. Der besondere Reiz dieser Bilder aus dem 17. Jahrhundert besteht nicht zuletzt in ihrem unmittelbaren Bezug zur Gegenwart. Was damals in einem vom monarchischen Absolutismus geprägten Europa eine Ausnahme darstellte, bildet im heutigen politischen und wirtschaftlichen Leben die Regel: Organisationen und Firmen werden von Personengruppen als Kommissionen, Kuratorien oder Aufsichtsräte gefuehrt. Damit schlagen diese Bilder eine Bruecke, die Vergan- genheit und heutige Lebenswelt unmittelbar verbindet. Die Gruppenporträts wurden zu besonderen Anlässen in Auftrag gegeben und zur Erinnerung in den Repräsentationsräumen der Institutionen aufgehängt. Sie gelangten nach deren Auflösung in das Eigentum der Stadt Amsterdam, einen Teil bildet die Schuttersgalerij im Amsterdams Historisch Museum. Aus diesem Bestand wurden die elf Bilder der Ausstellung ausgewählt, die von den Malern Adriaen Backer, Frans Badens, Ferdinand Bol, Gerbrand van den Eeckhout, Govert Flinck, Bartholomeus van der Helst, Nicolaes Eliasz Pickenoy und Dirck van Santvoort stammen.… (more)
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[Goldenes Zeitalter] is the exhibition catalogue from an exhibit I saw at the Alte Pinakothek in Munich over New Years 2011 consisting of Dutch group portraits from the 17th century, considered that country's "golden age" (hence the title). On tour while the museum was being renovated, the provide an interesting view into the social life of the new country, showing members of local militias, merchant guilds, and charitable boards, members of the new prosperous middle class who replaced of the old Spanish aristocracy when the Netherlands gained independence.

The art is quite lovely, and in real life the paintings are huge. I think the militia groups are my favorite, but also interesting is the inclusion of women in some of the other portraits, which shows that they were capable of achieving influence in their new Calvinist world.

The cover image is The Company of Captain Reynier Reael and Lieutenant Cornelis Blaeuw by Frans Hals and Pieter Codde, which in my edition is wrapped around on both front and back covers (the right image is my front cover).

The exhibition only toured Vienna and Munich, which means the cataloged was never produced in English, which is a shame, because some of the essays are very interesting and informative. But I'm sure these portraits are covered in other English works on golden age Dutch art. ( )
  inge87 | Aug 31, 2013 |
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