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Imitator of Hercules Segers, A Mountainous Landscape

Key facts
Full title A Mountainous Landscape
Artist Imitator of Hercules Segers
Artist dates 1589/90 - 1633 or later
Date made early 17th century
Medium and support Oil on oak
Dimensions 57.8 × 82.2 cm
Acquisition credit Bought, 1928
Inventory number NG4383
Location Not on display
Collection Main Collection
A Mountainous Landscape
Imitator of Hercules Segers

This wild and desolate landscape painting was once attributed to Rembrandt. In 1960, its attribution changed to Hercules Segers, but now it’s considered to be by an imitator of Segers’s imaginative and highly original etchings.

As most of Segers’s are, the landscape is imaginary. The rushing stream and fast-flying clouds give a sense of drama to the scene, but the proportions suggesting the distance between the church on the left and the half-hidden house on the right perhaps seem a little odd.

Swift brushstrokes of browns and ochre stand clear of the oak support in places, leaving a rough surface known as impasto, which gives the rocks substance and texture. Only a touch of red surrounding the tiny church on the plateau in the foreground and in patches of sky brighten the gloomy view.

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