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Hendrick Dubbels, A Dutch Yacht and Other Vessels Becalmed near the Shore

Key facts
Full title A Dutch Yacht and Other Vessels Becalmed near the Shore
Artist Hendrick Dubbels
Artist dates 1621 - 1707
Date made about 1660-70
Medium and support Oil on canvas
Dimensions 48.3 × 48.1 cm
Acquisition credit Salting Bequest, 1910
Inventory number NG2587
Location Not on display
Collection Main Collection
Previous owners
A Dutch Yacht and Other Vessels Becalmed near the Shore
Hendrick Dubbels

A man sits on a spit of land, his body reaching towards the sea, the line of his gaze drawing our eyes to the boats he watches. Perhaps he longs to be on board; perhaps he looks out for someone about to land. Or perhaps he’s just held by the visual poetry of the vessels themselves, the seemingly endless number of blues in the vast sky or the perfect reflections in the limpid water. On the right, a state yacht waits for the breeze, its sail barely moving, the Dutch colours at its peak drooping and its crew idle.

Life in seventeenth-century Holland was often lived on the water – and there were so many marine artists it seems that if the Dutch weren't on a boat, they were looking at pictures of them. Henrick Dubbels was one of the most successful of these artists.

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