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Dutch Art And The Hudson Valley Patroon Painters

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Chapter Summary

One of the earliest "schools" of American painting, the Hudson Valley patroon painters, has often been considered to have derived from seventeenth-century English portraiture. Portraits of English aristocrats appealed to Dutch patroons as displays of the kind of social status they aspired to in their new country British mezzotints after original paintings by Sir Godfrey Kneller and others provided the patroon painters with readily available models on which to base their portraits of wealthy Dutch Americans. Unfortunately, this convincing analysis vastly underestimates the influence of Dutch art and taste on the development of these paintings. Dutch art in all its forms was the first art to come to New York, and the first art to be produced here. Its influence lasted well into the eighteenth century and through an onslaught of British portraiture, which was in itself an offshoot of the Netherlandish portrait tradition.

Keywords:American painting; Dutch art; Hudson Valley patroon painters

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