Dutch Art as a Media


While not abundant at Beeld & Geluid, paintings are a common and historically present form of art in the Netherlands.

Within Dutch art there was a shift in who were the patrons of art. It had usually been the church and nobility, but since they came to play smaller roles in society the artists of the time had to seek a market elsewhere. In the wealthy cities of Holland, the average person was starting to collect art and could usually be found in possession of several artworks. Some particular styles of art really blew up, such as figure or genre pictures. They were usually depicting scenes from daily life that everyone recognized, and they often held some form of moralizing or narrative message.

One might even be able to compare them to the pictures that people post on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter. The art was intended for the wider public, which made it incredibly cheap. This meant that a large amount of people could be consuming these kinds of paintings, or even this particular painting as copies were common at the time. Art at the time became something for the masses, their meanings instilled in the paint and consumed by the viewer.