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Baroque Paintings

James A. Watkins is an entrepreneur, musician, and a writer with four non-fiction books and hundreds of magazine articles read by millions.

Baroque Art

Baroque is a term generally accepted to describe the paintings of the 17th Century, as well as the architecture, sculpture and music. Baroque Art was originally a pejorative term meaning 'irregular.'

Today, we look back on the 17th Century as a Golden Age of Art for The Netherlands, France and Spain. In this Hub, we will look at paintings from the Baroque Period, and the artists who painted them.

Caravaggio "Rest on the Flight into Egypt" 1597; Doria Pampilj Gallery, Rome

Caravaggio "Rest on the Flight into Egypt" 1597; Doria Pampilj Gallery, Rome

"Chalk portrait of Caravaggio" 1621 By Ottavio Leoni; Kimbell Art Museum, Ft. Worth, Texas

"Chalk portrait of Caravaggio" 1621 By Ottavio Leoni; Kimbell Art Museum, Ft. Worth, Texas

CARAVAGGIO

Caravaggio (1571-1610) is a painter of genius from Milan, Italy. Breaking from the idealization of the past, he painted ordinary people in sacred scenes.

Caravaggio was a controversial fellow who had trouble with the police most of his life, was imprisoned many times, and once killed a man in a duel. His mastery of light and dark would influence artists for decades. Caravaggio died of malaria.

Caravaggio "Supper at Emmaus" 1601; The National Gallery, London

Caravaggio "Supper at Emmaus" 1601; The National Gallery, London

"Rubens"  Etching by Wenzel Hollar 1619; University of Toronto

"Rubens" Etching by Wenzel Hollar 1619; University of Toronto

Peter Paul Rubens

Peter Paul Rubens (1577-1640) is the great Flemish painter of Baroque Art. Known as a virtuous Christian man of the highest character and intelligence, he seemingly had no limits as to what he could paint due to enormous ability.

Rubens was influenced immensely by the Italian painting traditions. His paintings seem alive and glow with sensuous color.

Peter Paul Rubens "Equestrian Portrait of the Duke of Lerma" 1603; Prado, Madrid

Peter Paul Rubens "Equestrian Portrait of the Duke of Lerma" 1603; Prado, Madrid

Peter Paul Rubens "Massacre of the Innocents" 1612; Art Gallery of Ontario

Peter Paul Rubens "Massacre of the Innocents" 1612; Art Gallery of Ontario

Peter Paul Rubens "Mars and Rhea Silvia" 1617; Liechtenstein Museum

Peter Paul Rubens "Mars and Rhea Silvia" 1617; Liechtenstein Museum

Hendrick Terbrugghen

Hendrick Terbrugghen (1588-1629) is a Dutch follower of Caravaggio from Utrecht. One can see the strong emotional and social realism in his work.

Hendrick Terbrugghen would influence many of the Dutch masters. While his name does not carry the prestige of the others on this page, I am fond of this specific painting, therefore his inclusion here.

Hendrick Terbrugghen "The Calling of St. Matthew" 1621; Centraal Museum, Utrecht, The Netherlands

Hendrick Terbrugghen "The Calling of St. Matthew" 1621; Centraal Museum, Utrecht, The Netherlands

CLAUDE LORRAIN

CLAUDE LORRAIN

Claude Lorrain

Claude Lorrain (1600-1682) was born into poverty in Champagne, France, but spent most of his life in Rome. He is famous in Baroque Art for virtually reinventing landscape painting, utilizing his amazing powers of observation.

Claude Lorrain widely influenced subsequent landscape painting in Europe and America. His aim was not topographical accuracy but to convey the essence of a landscape.

Claude Lorrain "Seaport with the Embarkation of the Queen of Sheba" 1648; The National Gallery, London

Claude Lorrain "Seaport with the Embarkation of the Queen of Sheba" 1648; The National Gallery, London

VELAZQUEZ

Velazquez (1599-1660) is of Portuguese descent but was born in Seville, Spain. He lived the majority of his days in Madrid, painting the royal family for King Philip IV. Velazquez was hailed as a genius by his 20th birthday. He was fascinated with the fleeting effects of light.

Velazquez is recognized today as the master illusionist of Baroque Art, who approached painting as a noble profession.

Velazquez "The Maids of Honour" 1656; Prado, Madrid (The artist himself is on your left)

Velazquez "The Maids of Honour" 1656; Prado, Madrid (The artist himself is on your left)

VERMEER

Vermeer (1632-1675) is a painter of Baroque Art whose work is hard to describe and even harder to forget. He was forgotten by the art world for 200 years before being "discovered" late in the 19th Century.

Vermeer created perfect paintings that are truly unique. He is the master of light—used to symbolically express his beliefs.

Vermeer "View on Delft" 1661; Royal Picture Gallery, The Hague, The Netherlands

Vermeer "View on Delft" 1661; Royal Picture Gallery, The Hague, The Netherlands

Aelbert Cuyp

Aelbert Cuyp (1620-1691) is a master landscape painter of Baroque Art from Holland. His family were all artists and wealthy. Cuyp portrayed radiant light to create poetic atmospheres in his landscapes.

He was also an excellent draftsman and that is apparent in his compositional structures. The majority of Cuyp's paintings are in England, where he was most popular.

Aelbert Cuyp "The Volkhof at Nijmegen" 1665; Indianapolis Museum of Art

Aelbert Cuyp "The Volkhof at Nijmegen" 1665; Indianapolis Museum of Art

Jan Steen "Self Portrait" 1670; Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam

Jan Steen "Self Portrait" 1670; Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam

Jan Steen

Jan Steen (1626-1679) is a Dutch genre painter of Baroque Art. He also owned a tavern and a brewery, which helps explain his keen insights into ordinary daily life of his day.

Steen is a master storyteller with a grand sense of humor. But if you look closely, there is a moral to the story. Steen is known to have used his own family as models, and he left behind over 800 paintings.

Jan Steen "The Dancing Couple" 1663; National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.

Jan Steen "The Dancing Couple" 1663; National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.

Jan Steen "The Merry Family" 1668; Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam

Jan Steen "The Merry Family" 1668; Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam

Murillo "Self Portrait" 1671; The National Gallery, London

Murillo "Self Portrait" 1671; The National Gallery, London

MURILLO

Murillo (1617-1682) is an eminent figure in Baroque Art. He was from Seville and also lived in Madrid for five years. Murillo was the most famous Spanish artist in the world until the popularity of Velazquez eclipsed his in the 19th Century.

He was an extraordinary painter of people, particularly women and children, showing an unusual depth of warmth and expressiveness in faces.

Murillo "Virgin and Child" 1677; Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

Murillo "Virgin and Child" 1677; Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

Comments

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on July 15, 2015:

Nhung Nguyen~ Thank you very much!

Nhung Nguyen from Vietnam on July 15, 2015:

Interesting article !

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on June 26, 2012:

JatAstera— Thank you very much for your comments. I appreciate the visit to my Hub. I hope you enjoyed the beautiful artworks.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on October 13, 2011:

shahneela ch— Thank you! Thank you very much. :)

shahneela ch on October 11, 2011:

soooooooooooooooooooooo much interestinggggggggggggggg

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on August 25, 2011:

rembrandz— Hello! I am glad you enjoyed my Hub. Thank you for visiting and for your kind compliments. I will come over soon to check out your Hubs. :-)

Remy Francis from Dubai on August 25, 2011:

Hi there

I enjoyed reading your hub. Always am interested in reading about the great artists as I was am a self-taught artist. Great hub!

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on July 24, 2010:

thinkbefore— I will come over and check out your above referenced Hub. I had not heard of a possible new Caravaggio. Thanks for the info. I appreciate this visit and you are welcome, too.

thinkbefore on July 19, 2010:

You gave a galley of beautiful paintings. Thanks!

I am writing because maybe you've heard the news: They might have discovered a new painting by Caravaggio. Since you wrote a buh on the Baroque, I am interested in what you think, especially with respect to authenticity. Some think the newly discovered painting is not his. For more infos, I've just written a hub on the topic

https://hubpages.com/art/New-Caravaggio

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on April 10, 2010:

stars439— Thank you! Thank you very much, my friend. I am glad you appreciate this gallery. The paintings are quite beautiful indeed.

stars439 from Louisiana, The Magnolia and Pelican State. on April 07, 2010:

Very lovely art. Photographs are beyond words. The hub is marvelous. God Bless You. Wonderful art style.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on March 11, 2010:

europewalker--- Thank you so much. The art museums in Europe are priceless and a great joy to visit. Thanks for coming by and leaving your nice compliments.

europewalker on March 10, 2010:

Love your art hubs. I was in an arty mood and came across your hubs. Takes me back to my visits to Europe and visiting art museums. Really nice hubs.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on March 08, 2010:

Mystique1957--- I am so glad that you enjoyed it. I love the paintings of this period. And some of the music. I am a big fan of Rubens, in particular. I sincerely appreciate the compliments, the regards, and the blessings, Al.

James

Mystique1957 from Caracas-Venezuela on March 07, 2010:

James...

I have delighted myself fully by watching this hub. I have always loved Baroque, very especially the music! Not belittling its Architecture and Paintings. Velazquez and Rubens are among my favorites and Baroque music played in any type of keyboards and Lute fascinate me!

Wonderful piece of History!

Thumbs up!

warmest regards and blessings,

Al

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on February 03, 2010:

Nicks--- Thank you for coming by and leaving your comments. The two "Vs" are tremendous artists, no doubt. I find the art of this period to be quite beautiful. The music and architecture was stunning, too.

Nicks on February 03, 2010:

Nice one, James. The Vermeer is gorgeous and Velazquez always terrific. A great time, indeed, that also produced some fabulous music and some extraordinarily flamboyant buildings. It always seems (if you had money, no doubt) as if it was an age of fun and flamboyance. Rather attractive...

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on January 24, 2010:

Teresa--- I am glad I might be of service. Thank you for the compliments and you are welcome. I am further pleased that I could provide an introduction to Terbbrugen.

Teresa on January 24, 2010:

Hi, I was looking for paintings in the Baroque time period to do a project for school and stumbled across this.. I like your taste, the works are beautiful. Terbbrugen is a favorite of mine and I hadn't seen the piece you put up until now. Thankyou!

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on December 01, 2009:

RKHenry— Coming from an art connoisseur such as you your comment is most gratifying. Thanks for coming. I'm huge Hendrix fan by the way.

RKHenry from Neighborhood museum in Somewhere, USA on December 01, 2009:

Bravo!

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on November 27, 2009:

brianjohnson951— Welcome to the Hub Pages Community. Oh yes, I have listened to much Bach. I am a musician, too. Thank you for your question.

brianjohnson951 on November 27, 2009:

Have you try to listen to the musis from that period, which include Bach.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on November 26, 2009:

ftgfmom— Well, I sure thank you for checking in with me. Happy Thanksgiving to you!

ftgfmom on November 26, 2009:

Lightning hit my computer. I'm at Myrtle Beach for Thanksgiving, I'm on my sister-in-laws computer. Thought I would try to catch up on a little reading. Hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on November 26, 2009:

ftgfmom— Where have you been, mom? I am so pleased to see you here. You are welcome and thank you for brightening up my evening.

ftgfmom on November 26, 2009:

Thank you for sharing. I liked the Maids of Honour the best. They were all beautiful.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on November 26, 2009:

Kebennett1— You are welcome. I always enjoy your writings.

Kebennett1 from San Bernardino County, California on November 26, 2009:

James, Thank you, it is nice to be missed!

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on November 26, 2009:

Frecklepants— Welcome to HubPages! Yes, I agree. Individual interpretation is a big part of the art experience. A great artist will do just that: convey what they are feeling through their creativity. Well put! Thanks for coming and your fine comments.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on November 26, 2009:

Truth From Truth— You're welcome. This is one of my favorite centuries for painting. The art is truly spectacular. Thanks for letting me know you enjoyed it.

Frecklepants from Never-Never Land on November 26, 2009:

Beautiful! I truly believe each individual interprets something different from each piece, but when you really examine them its almost as if you can feel the emotions of each artist as the masterpiece was created. Breathtaking!

Truth From Truth from Michigan on November 26, 2009:

Thanks , I learned much from this hub. The art was Spectacular.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on November 25, 2009:

prettydarkhouse— Oddly enough, none of these selections are in the Louvre. I have been to the Louvre. And I have had previous Hubs that featured art that is in that premier museum. The caption of each painting featured here includes the museum where it can be seen today. 3 are in London; 2 each in Amsterdam and Madrid; and the others scattered about.

Thank you for your comments and you are welcome. It is always a pleasure to see your face and read your thoughts. :)

prettydarkhorse from US on November 25, 2009:

Hi, The Renaissance period in the history of mankind produced maginificent art indeed, I am only familiar with Caravaggio. As usual you did a good job in introducing us to the other artists during that time...I dont know if their arts are displayed at The Louvre? Thanks, Maita

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on November 25, 2009:

Jane Grey— I confess I am not a fan of postmodern art. But I love the Baroque. And I'm glad you do too. I'm very pleased that you are back with us on HubPages. Your writing is deep and fine. Thank you for your excellent comments and you are surely welcome.

Ann Leavitt from Oregon on November 25, 2009:

I must add my laud to this hub of yours as well! The collection you showcased is exquisite, and your summaries of the artists' lives informative. I appreciated your comments on light and dark as reflecting spiritual themes; it is something the postmodern artists of our culture haven't quite captured as well, since there isn't as much of a dichotomy between good and evil in their minds. Thank you for bringing back these sacred treasures!

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on November 24, 2009:

Kebennett1— I'm sure glad you're back from vacation. I've missed your support. I appreciate your laudatory remarks. I am so pleased you enjoyed this gallery. You are welcome.

Kebennett1 from San Bernardino County, California on November 24, 2009:

James, I am always exhilarated by your magnificent Art choices. The Artists you choose to share with us are perfect choices of Masters in their style and period. Your research is awesome. Thanks for the eye-candy and knowledge! You never disappoint me :)

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on November 24, 2009:

GRivers— Thank you for saying so. You are most welcome. I appreciate this visit.

GRivers on November 24, 2009:

Thanks for sharing! Beautiful art! Lovely.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on November 23, 2009:

Nemingha— Earthquake? Where do you live? I thought it was Australia?

I love that Murillo. Of all these, I think it the most beautiful. I'm sorry you lost your prints. That must hurt. Thank you for coming by and leaving your compliments.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on November 23, 2009:

GPAGE! You are surely welcome, dear. I loved that "Seaport" as well. It's kind of dark and mysterious. The pieces by Steen are favorites of mine. They are so amusing and so capturing of the social milieu of his day. Vermeer, well, what can we say. The guy could paint. Thank you for your always interesting comments. :-)

Nemingha on November 23, 2009:

I'm a big fan of Murillo but unfortunately the prints I had of some of his works were destroyed during an earthquake many years ago. Great work putting this piece together.

GPAGE from California on November 23, 2009:

JAMES! Thank you again for a great art lesson! The "Seaport" painting by Claude Lorrain is "stunning!" I got a kick out of "The Merry Family" by Jan Steen and I'm in love with the Vermeer painting. I sometimes wish I could just walk into a painting and be there! Exactly how it looks, even for a second so I can take in the whole place. Beautiful work here and "thank you" for writing about a fave subject of mine! G

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on November 22, 2009:

Kaie Arwen— They say mutts have the best temperament. :-)

I was just perusing your profile. I'm gonna mosey over and check out your "limbo" story tonight or tomorrow.

Kaie Arwen on November 22, 2009:

yeah, they think I'm really tough (ha, ha) ........... and most are scared to death of my dogs. My grandmother was Welsh........ I guess I'm just kind of a mutt.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on November 22, 2009:

dusanotes— Don, thank you for that. And I'll say "indeed."

James A Watkins

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on November 22, 2009:

Kaie Arwen— I am largely of Welsh descent. That's what made me wonder. I thought it looked like a Welsh name. So, they see you in a rocking chair with a shotgun surrounded by dogs? Well, that's a picture isn't it? :)

dusanotes from Windermere, FL on November 22, 2009:

James, all I can say is "magnificent."

Don White

Kaie Arwen on November 22, 2009:

The name is Celtic, but the ancestor was from Strathclyde in Scotland; ironically it was a Welsh speaking area, and I believe it is the Welsh spelling of the name.

When we study the Scots/ Irish migration in school, I tell the kids to picture me in the Appalachian Mountains making whiskey with my great-great-great grandfather; one of them once told me they'd have an easier time seeing me on a front porch in a rocking chair, surrounded by my dogs, and holding a shotgun. It's amazing how they see me sometimes!

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on November 22, 2009:

Paraglider— Thank you very much for coming. I know you have a sharp eye for art and artists. I agree with your choices. Those two are extraordinary. Chiaroscuro. I had forgotten that word. Good one! The Emmaus painting is the best example of artistic genius on this page, in my opinion.

Dave McClure from Worcester, UK on November 22, 2009:

I still think that Caravaggio and Vermeer are supreme, though different, in sheer technique. Caravaggio's chiaroscuro approach throws the attention exactly where he wants it, while with Vermeer, every detail of his paintings stands scrutiny.

Interesting that baroque means irregular; I'd always assumed it meant ornate, as with all the very stylised ornamentations and graces used in baroque music.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on November 22, 2009:

Kaie Arwen— Is that a Welsh name?

I see what you mean about the two paintings. I like the one in Toronto better. Thanks for coming back with the additional info.

Kaie Arwen on November 21, 2009:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Rubens_kindermor...

This was the only link I could find for the other painting, and I have to tell you I'm not a big fan of wikipedia. We tell the kids they CANNOT use it as a resource for school. The painting you've shown here is powerful, very graphic, and we were very lucky to see it shortly after its arrival to the museum. Well, at least I thought I was lucky.......... my son may appreciate it someday.

I will look forward to the next tour

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on November 21, 2009:

jiberish— Must be that walking that did the trick! Congratulations on the grandson. I haven't been to the Cummer. That's in Jax, right? I'll have to get up there and check it out. It is great to watch your children grow isn't it? That is a joy.

Thanks for coming and the interesting comments are always eagerly awaited.

jiberish from florida on November 21, 2009:

It's funny you should write about art, we must think alike. Thursday I took my daughter to the Cummer Museum. She was two weeks past due from having my grandson so we decided to walk around. She was so fascinated, this time she stopped to read each narration under the art..She has grown into a woman and I became a grandmother on Friday. The first time we visited was 9 years ago, and she was far less interested. It was pleasant to see her interests have changed. Fascinating Hub as always.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on November 21, 2009:

ArchDynamics— Thanks for coming, brother. It's always a bit quiet on Saturday night. But I've been working all day on a blockbuster you'll like.

That's a cool web site. Thanks for that link. The girls in art class are hot! I love it.

ArchDynamics from Orlando, FL on November 21, 2009:

oops ... 'Maxfield Parrish', Ay yi yi.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on November 21, 2009:

Kaie Arwen— I would love to see that painting. I was not aware that Rubens painted two of them, but I was aware that it was recently discovered to be one of his. The Watkins Institute! I like that. I'm doing what I can to spread beauty throughout the world. :-)

Thank you for coming by and leaving your lovely comments.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on November 21, 2009:

JimLow— Hey Jim! Thanks for coming. You know I agree with your comments. And I appreciate them.

ArchDynamics from Orlando, FL on November 21, 2009:

King James:

Another delightful Hub - all the more so with the visual feast of exceptional art.

You can view full-color photos of all of Brugghen's paintings here http://www.hendrickbrugghen.org/

The use of light and contrast during this period is just exceptional. You can see this style reflected in artists as varied as Maxwell Parish and Frank Frazetta.

I love your Hubs about art - it's like being back in school but fun. Not to mention the girls in this class are pretty hot.

Kaie Arwen on November 21, 2009:

I saw the "Massacre of the Innocents" at the gallery in Toronto while on a hockey trip with my children some years back, and yes, most every one of those trips included culture/ history of some kind. Love those rinks, but admittedly the boys didn't always love my field trips!

I remember this painting in particular because it was so graphic, and I remember the docent telling me that at one time the work was attributed to someone else. Rubens did two versions of this painting correct? I've never seen the other, and hadn't thought about it in ages, but may have to do some looking.

Thanks for another stroll through the Watkins Institute........... always a pleasure.

JimLow on November 21, 2009:

Exquisitely beautiful art!

It amazes me to see such amazing works by the hands of men. It truly is a God-given talent.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on November 21, 2009:

ethel smith— Yes, he was a genius. Thank you for visiting and your comments. :)

Ethel Smith from Kingston-Upon-Hull on November 21, 2009:

Such lovely works of art especially caravaggio

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on November 21, 2009:

Tom Whitworth— I do too, Tom. It is hard to figure what people were thinking. Apparently, this art was more decorative and flamboyant that what the critics were used to. Also, the use of regular street people was shocking to the sensibilities of the day, versus a more idealized picture of beauty in the Renaissance.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on November 21, 2009:

cr8ve1— Thank you! I love this period of the history of painting. Rubens, Murillo, Steen, Caravaggio. What awesome talent these men displayed. Thanks for coming and leaving your kind comments. And you are welcome.

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on November 21, 2009:

Lisa Luv— I am well pleased that you have visited and let me know how much you enjoyed this Hub. You are most welcome, Lisa.

James

Tom Whitworth from Moundsville, WV on November 21, 2009:

James,

I think this art is beautiful. Why was the term Baroque considerered a pejorative? What is the irregularity of this art?

cr8ve1 on November 21, 2009:

James...this was fantastic! I only recognized two though...guess I need to read up on more of these artists! lol Thanks for sharing this and showing me what I still have to learn about art and artists!! Great article!

Lisa J Warner AKA Lisa Luv from Conneticut, USA on November 21, 2009:

Wow James--talk about catching us up in art history and the visuals really aided me--(you know how I am) smile, I love articles like this. Thank you so much..Lisa

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on November 21, 2009:

Pamela99— Thank you so much for viewing my hand-picked gallery. And you are surely welcome

James A Watkins (author) from Chicago on November 21, 2009:

Hello, hello,— Thank you for being my first visitor!! You are surely welcome. :-)

Pamela Oglesby from Sunny Florida on November 21, 2009:

James, the art is beautiful. I wasn't familiar with some of those artist so it was nice to read the information about the artist while viewing his masterpieces. Thanks.

Hello, hello, from London, UK on November 21, 2009:

Hello, James, thank you so very much for bringing these master and masterpieces to our attention. They really are master pieces.

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