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A Saw-mill by a Torrent
Allart van Everdingen
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A patch of sunlight lights up the thatched roof of an old watermill and the white foam of the turbulent river passing. Allart van Everdingen has made little of the wheel that marks the cottage as a mill – he has concentrated on the mood created by the water and the colours of the surrounding landscape.

Many watermills were being abandoned at this time in Holland; perhaps the artist was suggesting that this one too has outlived its usefulness. The day shown is a chill one, but there’s no smoke coming from the mill’s chimney.

In the 1640s van Everdingen had travelled in Norway and he returned to Haarlem with drawings and sketches of the landscape there, very different to the flat Dutch terrain – waterfalls, mountains and tall, coniferous trees. He turned them into finished landscapes painted in the studio, combining his experience of Norway with objects, such as the mill, that were more typically Dutch.

Key facts
Artist Allart van Everdingen
Artist dates 1621 - 1675
Full title A Saw-mill by a Torrent
Date made about 1670
Medium and support Oil on oak
Dimensions 44.8 x 60.3 cm
Inscription summary Signed
Acquisition credit Presented by George H. Boughton RA, 1900
Inventory number NG1701
Location in Gallery Not on display
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