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Salomon van Ruysdael: 'River Scene'

This is an early work. The main subject is the densely wooded river bank silhouetted against the cloudy sky and reflected in the waters of the river. The area to the right, with its dark reflections in the water, is contrasted with the lighter expanses to the left where the boats are clustered and the river continues its course into the distance. The clouds echo the trees in their varied groupings, forming a denser area to the left which balances the darkened river to the right. This skillful design is in sharp contrast to a later work by the painter, his 'Landscape with a Carriage' of 1659 in the National Gallery, with its looser handling and more fragmented appearance.

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