The most celebrated
member of a family of Dutch painters from Haarlem, where he worked
virtually all his life. He became a member of the painters' guild in
1640 and is said by a contemporary source to have been a pupil of
The only thing he has in common with Hals, however,
is his nimble brushwork, for he specialized in landscapes of hilly
country with horses — cavalry skirmishes, camps, hunts,
travelers halting outside an inn, and so on. In this genre he was
immensely prolific and also immensely successful.
He had many
imitators, including his brother Pieter, and his great popularity
continued throughout the 18th century. Subsequently he has perhaps
been underrated, for although his work generally follows a
successful formula, he maintained a high quality; his
draughtsmanship is elegant, his composition sure, his coloring
delicate, and his touch lively.