European Art: 17th-18th Centuries

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Pastoral Scene, 1679

Nicolaes Berchem

Dutch, 1620-1683
Oil on panel
26-5/8 x 25-1/4 in. (67.6 x 64.1 cm)
The Norton Simon Foundation
F.1972.15.4.P
© The Norton Simon Foundation

On view

Nicolaes Berchem was a member of the second generation of Dutch Italianate artists. These painters, many of whom had spent time in Rome, produced pastoral subjects set in a warm, sunbathed Italian landscape. Berchem’s depiction of this idyllic countryside, where shepherds live in peace and harmony, was meant to evoke the spirit of Classical authors such as Virgil. Berchem’s thick, fractured brushstrokes are evident throughout and provide a lively rhythm on the surface.

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