Maritime Art

The Dutch coast with a weyschuit being launched and another vessel pushing off from the shore c.1690

By Willem Van de Velde the Younger (1633-1707)

This painting by the Dutch artist Willem van de Velde the Younger, one of the finest maritime artists of any era, was purchased from the executors of the state of Sir Bruce Ingram in 1964 with the assistance of the Society for Nautical Research.

Ingram, a publishing entrepreneur and philanthropist, and also an Honorary Vice-President of the Society for Nautical Research, was a great benefactor of the National Maritime Museum and left a large number of Van de Velde drawings to the museum in his will. His family also agreed the private sale of two further paintings from his collection, including this one.

The painting shows a busy coastal scene probably near Den Helder with the ships at anchor in the Marsdiep, the deep water anchorage lying between Den Helder and Texel.

A variety of vessel types are depicted. In the shallow water of the foreground a small boeier is being pushed off – the vessel identifiable because it has a wider leeboard than a weyschuit, the vessel type shown on the beach in the centre. Two ships are shown in the background of the centre and left and a ship’s barge is shown pushing off from the breakwater on the right. Beyond the breakwater are two further vessel types – a States yacht and a smalschip.

The Society has helped to purchase three paintings by Van de Velde the younger including his masterpiece The ‘Gouden Leeuw’ at the Battle of the Texel, 21 August 1673 (1687).

Numerous articles on Van de Velde the Younger and his father, Van de Velde the Elder have been published in the Mariner’s Mirror and can be browsed here.

Maritime Art Archive

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