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Oklahoma City Museum of Art Final Venue for Exhibition of 17th-century Masterpieces
Philips Wouwerman, Halt of a Hunting Party, early 1660. Oil on canvas, 31 x 42. Courtesy of the Dulwich Picture Gallery.
OKLAHOMA CITY, OK.- The Oklahoma City Museum of Art will present The Dutch Italianates: 17th-century Masterpieces from Dulwich Picture Gallery, an exhibition presenting views of the Italian landscape of the seventeenth century as seen through Dutch artists’ eyes. The Museum is the final venue for The Dutch Italianates, which will be on view in Oklahoma City from October 8, 2009, through January 3, 2010.

This exhibition will display a group of thirty-nine paintings by the famed masters of the Dutch Italianate style. Including masterpieces by Aelbert Cuyp, Nicolaes Berchem, Karel Dujardin, Philips Wouwermans, and Adam Pynacker, this exhibition offers an exceptional opportunity to view works from the world-class collection of Dulwich Picture Gallery, England’s oldest purpose-built public art gallery.

Italy has always exerted a powerful influence on artists of all kinds. The 17th century proved to be one of Italy’s most influential periods, as artists from all over Europe flocked to Rome to work alongside their Italian colleagues. Perhaps the most remarkable and prolific artistic influx of painters to Italy in this period was that of the Dutch.

These artists turned to the Italian campagna for their subject matter, playing a crucial role in the birth of a new genre of pure landscape. Painters such as Jan Both and Nicolaes Berchem brought back with them seductive visions of mountains and peasants basking under golden skies to flat and often cloudy Holland. Dutch patrons could not get enough of the genre, inspiring Cuyp, Wynants, Wouwermans, and Weenix to create their own interpretation of a landscape they may never have seen.

For the founders of Dulwich Picture Gallery, collecting in the 1790s, these artists were at the height of their value and reputation, although they were subsequently overlooked in favor of better-known Dutch artists. This exhibition will introduce audiences to the artists responsible for a style that profoundly influenced the 18th-century aesthetic, particularly in France, but in England also – and even carried over to 19th-century America.



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