Meindert Hobbema

1638 - 1709
Hobbema was born in Amsterdam in 1638, the son of a carpenter. At the age of 15, he and his younger brother and sister are recorded as having been sent to an orphanage. Two years later, in 1655, Hobbema was taken on as an apprentice to the famous landscape painter Jacob van Ruisdael.

In his early works Hobbema closely followed the compositions of Ruisdael, before developing his own individual style, which is lighter than Ruisdael's in both tone and mood. He specialised in elaborate woodland scenes, often large-scale compositions animated with small figures and repeated in several variants. Watermills were a favourite motif.

In 1668, Hobbema married, and in the same year took up the post of municipal wine-gauger which involved the weighing and measuring of imported wines. With a wife, a job and a salary his painting output slowed down considerably - but he did produce his most famous work, 'The Avenue at Middelharnis', in 1689, twenty years after having given up art as a profession.

The last years of Hobbema's life were harsh. His wife and his two children died in 1704, and five years later Hobbema died to be buried in a pauper's grave.

Related paintings

A Road winding past Cottages
Meindert Hobbema
about 1667-8
A Road winding past Cottages
A Stream by a Wood
Meindert Hobbema
about 1663
A Stream by a Wood
A Woody Landscape
Meindert Hobbema
about 1665
A Woody Landscape
A Woody Landscape with a Cottage
Meindert Hobbema
about 1665
A Woody Landscape with a Cottage
Cottages in a Wood
Meindert Hobbema
about 1660
Cottages in a Wood
The Avenue at Middelharnis
Meindert Hobbema
1689
The Avenue at Middelharnis
The Haarlem Lock, Amsterdam
Meindert Hobbema
about 1663-5
The Haarlem Lock, Amsterdam
The Ruins of Brederode Castle
Meindert Hobbema
1671
The Ruins of Brederode Castle
The Watermills at Singraven near Denekamp
Meindert Hobbema
probably 1665-70
The Watermills at Singraven near Denekamp
 
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