The Rustic Landscape from Bruegel to Ruisdael
By (author) Walter S. Gibson
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Pleasant Places by Walter S. Gibson
Book DescriptionThe variations of pleasure and their expression in Dutch rustic landscapes of the seventeenth century are recurring themes in Walter S. Gibson's engaging new book. Gibson focuses on Haarlem between 1600 and 1635, in his interpretation of Dutch landscapes and emphasizes prints, the medium in which the rustic view was first made available to the general art-buying public. Gibson begins by looking at the origins of the rustic landscape in the sixteenth-century Flanders and its later reformation by Dutch artists, a legacy very much alive today. He next offers a critical review of 'scriptural reading', a popular mode of interpreting the Dutch rustic landscape that incorporates Calvinist-influenced moral allegories. Gibson then explores traditional ideas concerning recreation and suggests that the pleasure of rural landscapes, not preaching, constituted their chief appeal for seventeenth-century urban viewers. Using Visscher's "Plaisante Plaetsen" ("Pleasant Places") as a point of departure, Gibson examines the ways that townspeople, both the day-trippers and owners of country houses, experienced the Dutch countryside. He also discusses the role of staffage and suggests how the representations of peasants might have conditioned the responses of contemporary viewers to rural images. Finally, Gibson considers how scenes of the dilapidated farm buildings, dead trees, and other evidence of material decay may reflect traditional ideas rustic life as imagined by a townsperson. Or how they may represent another way for the artist to engage his urban audience: far removed from the idealized landscapes of a Giorgione, the rustic landscape of a Ruisdael conveys a countryside that was beginning to disappear under the relentless pressures of urbanization. Gibson's multilayered exploration of the rustic landscape enhances our understanding of the Golden Age in Dutch art. His richly illustrated book recalls a countryside now largely gone; at the same time, his evocative language gracefully articulates the role of the Dutch rustic landscape in the history of landscape painting.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780520216983
(280mm x 216mm x 22mm)
Imprint: University of California Press
Publisher: University of California Press
Publish Date: 12-Apr-2000
Country of Publication: United States
Books By Author Walter S. Gibson
Figures of Speech, Hardback (March 2010)
For sixteenth-century Netherlanders, proverbs revealed the wisdom of the Ancients as well as the linguistic richness found in their own native language. This book addresses a key topic in Renaissance studies: the importance and pervasiveness of proverbs. It presents a survey of the visual representations of proverbs.
Pieter Bruegel and the Art of Laughter, Hardback (February 2006)
Pieter Bruegel (1525-1569), generally considered the greatest Flemish painter of the sixteenth century, was described as a supremely comic artist. This book explores the function and production of laughter in the sixteenth century, and also examines the ways in which Bruegel exploited the comic potential of Hieronymus Bosch.
Hieronymus Bosch, Paperback (July 1973)» View all books by Walter S. Gibson
A concise, authoritative survey of the work of Hieronymus Bosch (c. 1450 - 9 August 1516), an Early Netherlandish painter known for religious and moral subjects, fantastic creatures, and terrifying images of hell.
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Author Biography - Walter S. Gibson
Walter S. Gibson is Andrew W. Mellon Professor of the Humanities Emeritus at Case Western Reserve University. His published works include Pieter Bruegel the Elder: Two Studies (1993) and Mirror of the Earth: The World Landscape in Flemish Painting of the Sixteenth Century (1989). He lives in Vermont.
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