Canadian Art

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Vermeer, Rembrandt and the Golden Age of Dutch Art: Masters Redux

Vancouver Art Gallery May 10 to Sep 13 2009
Jacob Marrel  <I>Page from a Tulip Book</I>  1640  Copyright Rijksmuseum Amsterdam Jacob Marrel Page from a Tulip Book 1640 Copyright Rijksmuseum Amsterdam

Jacob Marrel <I>Page from a Tulip Book</I> 1640 Copyright Rijksmuseum Amsterdam

When the Group of Seven started out, the assured polish of Dutch art was the nemesis of Canada’s homegrown proto-modernists. The Netherlands' seemingly eternal establishment art provided the aesthetic yardstick by which all other art was judged, so the feeling was “move over 17th century and make room for the 20th.” Be that as it may, there’s no denying that the Dutch set standards with the work of Rembrandt, Hals, Vermeer and others. So it’s exciting to consider the remarkable gathering of more than a hundred works at the Vancouver Art Gallery direct from the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam. It’s the largest exhibition of Dutch historical art ever held in Canada. Divided into eight thematic sections that include city, landscape, portraiture and scenes of everyday life, it is a show with wide resonance for the contemporary photographic art that has put Vancouver on the map and into present-day history books. (750 Hornby St, Vancouver BC)

This article was first published online on May 7, 2009.

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