Flemish painting

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History of Dutch and Flemish painting
Early Netherlandish  (1400–1523)
Renaissance painting  (1520–1580)
Northern Mannerism  (1580–1615)
Dutch "Golden Age" painting  (1615–1702)
Flemish Baroque painting  (1608–1700)
List of Dutch painters
List of Flemish painters

Flemish painting flourished from the early 15th century until the 17th century. Flanders delivered the leading painters in Northern Europe and attracted many promising young painters from neighbouring countries. These painters were invited to work at foreign courts and had a Europe-wide influence. Since the end of the Napoleonic era, Flemish painters had again been contributing to a reputation that had been set by the Old Masters.[1]

Late Gothic[edit]

The so-called Flemish Primitives were the first to popularize the use of oil paint. Their art has its origins in the miniature painting of the late Gothic period. Chief among them were Jan van Eyck, Hans Memling, Hugo van der Goes, Robert Campin and Rogier van der Weyden.


From the early 16th century, the Italian Renaissance started to influence the Flemish painters. The result was very different from the typical Italian Renaissance painting. The leading artist was Pieter Brueghel the Elder, who avoided direct Italian influence, unlike the Northern Mannerists.


After the Siege of Antwerp (1584-1585), the Southern Provinces of the Netherlands ("Flanders") remained under Spanish rule and were separated from the independent Dutch Republic. Although many artists fled the religious wars and moved from the Southern Netherlands to the Dutch Republic (see Dutch Golden Age painting), Flemish Baroque painting flourished, especially in the Antwerp school, during the seventeenth century under Rubens, Anthony van Dyck, and Jacob Jordaens.


Following the deaths of major artists like Rubens in 1640 and the end of the Eighty Years War in 1648, the cultural significance of Flanders declined.


A revival of painting in this region came in the advent of the Belgian Revolution of 1830 and work around that time is often considered Flemish.[2] The painters, who flourished in the aftermath of this patriotic period, are usually referred to as Belgian rather than Flemish. That kingdom comprising Flanders, often influences also more recent artists's categorization (see List of Belgian painters).

Modern Flemish painting[edit]

Although James Ensor stood apart from his contemporaries, this innovator in 19th-century art significantly influenced such 20th-century artists as Paul Klee, Emil Nolde, George Grosz, Alfred Kubin, Wols, Felix Nussbaum, and other expressionist and surrealist painters of the 20th century.[3]

Of the expressionist (i.e. the second) 'Group of Latem', Permeke is generally best known, and for more than four years his face was most prominent on the last banknote of 1,000 Belgian francs — as a 20 Euro bill took over its role.[4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Belgian painting". South African Encyclopedia (SAE). MyFundi(TM), South-Africa. Archived from the original on July 20, 2011. Retrieved 29 May 2014.  External link in |publisher= (help)
  2. ^ "Guide de visite : Episode des journées de septembre 1830 sur la place de l'Hôtel de Ville de Bruxelles". Musée d'Art Ancien (Musées royaux des Beaux-Arts de Belgique) — Peinture flamande - Ecoles du Nord — XIXème siècle en Belgique (in French). Insecula Society, Thailand. Retrieved 16 February 2011. 
  3. ^ Becks-Malorny, Ulrike (2000). Ensor. Taschen GmbH, Cologne, Germany. p. 92. ISBN 3-8228-5858-7. 
  4. ^ Timmer-van Eunen, Marie (2007). "Men voelt het of men voelt het niet — De kunstkritiek van Jan Engelman" (PDF) (in Dutch). University of Groningen, The Netherlands: 117. ISBN 978-90-367-3026-6. Retrieved 2011-02-17. 

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]