Dutch Architecture

Dutch Architecture

The Dutch art of the 16th century was shaped by the influences of the Italian Renaissance, the 17th century applies to BC. a. in the northern Netherlands (Holland), as the “Golden Age”, the 18th century is determined by French influences. In the 16th century, numerous Dutch artists, v. a. Painter and sculptor, active in Italy, Germany and East Central Europe, vice versa, v. a. French and Italian architects and sculptors in the Netherlands.


The Dutch architecture of the 16th century was initially characterized by the mixture of mostly individual Italian elements (column arrangements, antique ornamentation) with the formal language of the native late Gothic (city chancellery in Bruges, 1534); sporadic buildings were built in the style of the Italian Renaissance (portal of Saint-Jacques in Liège, 1558). Starting in the middle of the 16th century, the so-called Floris style developed, based on C. Floris , which was of decisive importance for the architecture and ornamentation (scrollwork and fittings, grotesque) of Northern Europe; Of particular note is the Antwerp City Hall (1561–65), which was followed by that of The Hague (1564–65).

According to estatelearning, characteristic of the architecture in the north of the Netherlands is the predominant use of brick with house stone elements with a similar shape. The Protestant church building was important, the main master of which was L. de Key (City Hall in Leiden, 1593–94; Fleischhalle in Haarlem, 1602–03) and H. de Keyser (Zuiderkerk, 1603–11; Westerkerk 1620–31, both in Amsterdam) were. The sermon churches and the secular architecture of the Reformed North were dominated by sober classicism, which shaped the subsequent development of Dutch architecture. Outstanding architects were those of A. Palladio influenced J. van Campen (Mauritshuis in The Hague, started in 1633; Nieuwe Kerk in Haarlem, 1645–49; City Hall in Amsterdam, started in 1648) and P. Post, who completed the Mauritshuis and in The Hague the royal pleasure palace “Huis ten Bosch” (started 1645) and the Nieuwe Kerk (begun in 1649) and the town hall (1659–64) in Maastricht. The Vingboons family of architects (Trippenhuis in Amsterdam, 1662) was important for residential building. The most influential architect of the first half of the 18th century is considered to be the French D. Marot the Elder , who had worked for the governor’s court in The Hague since 1685. Important building tasks in the 18th century were also welfare institutions (orphanages, hospitals, old people’s homes) and the military (arsenals, fortifications).

In the Catholic South, v. a. the church building, strongly influenced by Italian influences, an important role (Augustinian Church in Antwerp, 1615-18, by Wenzel Coebergher [* 1561, † 1634]). The Italian influence is particularly evident in the buildings for the Jesuits: Peter Huyssens (* 1577, † 1637), master builder of the Jesuits, built churches in Antwerp (1615–21), Bruges (1619–41) and Namur (1621–45), Willem Hesius (* 1601, † 1690) the Sint-Michielskerk (1650–71) in Leuven. The house of PP Rubens in Antwerp (1616-21) follows the Italian palace architecture of the 16th century; PP Rubens’ Sequences of the “Palazzi di Genova” (1622) contributed to the dissemination of Italian suggestions. From the late 17th century onwards, Palladianism also prevailed in the southern Netherlands (the so-called House of the Dukes of Brabant in Brussels, started in 1695, by Willem de Bruyn [* 1649, † 1719]), before French influence (especially in Castles and country houses) predominated.

Dutch Architecture


In the first half of the 16th century, the sculpture was made by the masters C. Meit from Worms (tombs in Saint-Nicolas in Brou, Bourg-en-Bresse, 1526–32) and Jean Monet (* around 1485, † 1550) from Metz (Martin’s altar in the Onze-Lieve-Vrouwekerk in Halle, 1533), who introduced the formal language of the Italian Renaissance. Significant works by Jacques Dubrœucq (* around 1500/10, † 1584; rood screen in the church of Sainte-Waudru in Mons, 1539–49) and C. Floris (rood screen in the cathedral in Tournai, 1570–73). The work of the Dutch-born sculptors Giambologna (active in Italy) and A. de Vries (active in Prague, Germany and Denmark). Important masters of the 17th century were H. de Keyser (tomb for Wilhelm den Schweiger in the Nieuwe Kerk in Delft, 1614–22), A. Quellinus the Elder and R. Verhulst (both involved in the construction of the Amsterdam City Hall since 1650), L Faydherbe (major works under PP Rubens’ influence in the cathedral of Mechlin) and A. Quellinus the Younger (figure of God the Father in the cathedral in Bruges, 1682); under the influence of GL Bernini , F. Duquesnoy worked in Rome (Figure of St. Andrew in St. Peter in Rome, 1633–39). In the 18th century BC arose a. Portrait busts in the style of the French Bernini successor.

Applied Arts

Dutch knitting, with its main center in Brussels, was the leader in Europe in the 16th and 17th centuries. Tapestries were created based on designs by Dutch painters (including B. van Orley , P. Coecke van Aelst , PP Rubens , J. Jordaens), but also based on designs by Italian masters (Raffael , G. Romano). Since the late 16th century there were weaving mills in the northern Netherlands (Delft, Gouda).

Dutch silversmithing (A. and P. van Vianen , active in Utrecht and Prague) was also of European importance in the 17th century. Delft faience, especially those in the classic blue and white decor based on Chinese porcelain, were considered first class from around 1650 to 1750; The often high-quality tile painting was also widespread; The production of engraved glasses is also significant.