4th June – 12th September 2010

Sailing Under Full Canvas

Exhibition in the Kunsthalle Hamburg


This exhibition on marine painting from the Golden Age of Dutch culture in the 17th century brings together around 80 masterpieces drawn from international collections and the holdings of the Hamburger Kunsthalle. It showes paintings and drawings by all the leading marine painters of the time. To this day, these images evoke a sense of freedom, independence and adventure, but also a mood of contemplation and tranquillity. As the economic and political fate of the Dutch people in the Golden Age was closely tied to the sea, the main subject of these artworks are ships with billowing sails that are visible from afar, but painstakingly detailed paintings of calmer waters also feature.


On the one hand, the artworks on show in the exhibition reveal the powerful influence and wealth of the Dutch navy in the 17th century; on the other, they invite us to consider more complex interpretations: the ship as a metaphor for life, a symbol of nationhood and the exploration of distant lands, as well as a demonstration of proud foreign policy and shrewd trade policy.


The exhibition will travel to the Villa Vauban – Musée d’Art de la Ville de Luxembourg afterwards. (11 November 2910 till 28 March 2011).


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