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Carel Fabritius

1622 - 1654
Carel Fabritius
Image: Detail from Carel Fabritius, Young Man in a Fur Cap, 1654

Fabritius was the most innovative of Rembrandt's pupils. He worked under him in Amsterdam during the period 1641-3. Very few of his works survive.

Fabritius painted in Delft and his work with its cool lighting, dark figures against a light background, and his interest in the nature of optics has an affinity with the most famous Delft artist, Vermeer.

Fabritius was tragically killed at the age of 32 when the Delft municipal gunpowder magazine exploded in 1654. The aftermath of this event was recorded in a painting by Egbert van der Poel. The New Church at the left of his picture can also be seen in Fabritius's 'View of Delft' in the Collection.

Fabritius's few paintings show a very accomplished technique. He combined thin glazes with selected areas of impasto to create varying impressions of depth and texture. The extent to which he may have been interested in perspectival effects is considered in the entry on the 'View of Delft', a painting which may have formed part of a perspective box.