According to Houbraken he was a pupil of Philips Wouwerman who painted many battle pieces and staging areas (Dutch: pleisterplaatsen). He was in the habit of keeping his own schedule at the risk of offending customers - Houbraken relates a moment when a patron came to his house for a viewing and he claimed he "wasn't at home". The patron was so insulted that when Gael came to him with the finished painting, he claimed he was now "not at home" and refused payment.
According to the RKD he painted Italianate landscapes and was prominent in the Haarlem Guild of St. Luke by 1642. His latest known dated painting is from 1679, but his paintings are rarely dated. He is listed as dead in a list of guild members by Vincent van der Vinne's son Laurens in 1702. He moved from Haarlem to Amsterdam sometime between the years 1661 and 1673, where he stayed. An apprenticeship to Wouwerman was never found in the archives during the period under review, but he shows strong influence by Haarlem colleagues. He has a large oeuvre that is somewhat monotonous.
- (Dutch) Barent Gael Biography in De groote schouburgh der Nederlantsche konstschilders en schilderessen (1718) by Arnold Houbraken, courtesy of the Digital library for Dutch literature
- De archiefbescheiden van het St. Lukasgilde te Haarlem 1497-1798, Hessel Miedema, 1980, ISBN 90-6469-584-9
- Barent Gael in the RKD