Municipal Museum, The Hague
August 27 – November 21, 2005
This autumn the Gemeentemuseum Den Haag (Municipal Museum, The Hague) is proud to present a major overview of the work of Jacoba van Heemskerck (1876-1923), an artist who made a major contribution to the development of Dutch modern art in the early 20th century.
Jacoba van Heemskerck was initially trained at the Royal Academy in The Hague, and later, as Picasso, Munch and Matisse at the studio of Eugène Carrière in Paris. It was there that – most unusually for a woman of her day – she became involved with the latest developments in modern art. Following this formative period in Paris, she was to spend the rest of her life working in The Hague and in Domburg, where she and her life-time companion Marie Tak van Poortvliet had extensive contact with the Dutch avant-garde. In the course of this period, Tak assembled an impressive art collection, including works by artists such as Piet Mondrian, Franz Marc, Fernand Léger and Wassily Kandinsky.
Jacoba van Heemskerk’s artistic evolution was very similar to that of Mondrian: both artists were influenced around 1910 by modern movements like Luminism and Cubism, worked together in Domburg and more than once they painted the same subject. The result was a visual idiom making extensive use of contrasts: vivid versus muted colors, lines versus planes, horizontals versus verticals. But whereas Mondrian’s artistic approach eventually became austerely geometrical, Van Heemskerck’s developed an open, unconstrained and intuitive style. The recurring subjects in her oeuvre are symbolic in nature: sailing ships, bridges and trees, depicted in clear, vibrant colors and with firm outlines. Although she was never to abandon the representation of the real world, Van Heemskerck’s style was eventually so abstract that her subjects became virtually unrecognizable. This approach won her great success.
Van Heemskerck van Beest, Jacoba Berindina (1876-1923)
The career of the schilderes and graphic artist starts just really around 1908, if she paints landscapes in a clear, radiating style. This happened under the influence of the painters Jan Toorop and piet Mondriaan, whom then as well as they spent their summery in the zeeuwse Domburg. Around 1911 she became be.nvloed its work also influences of the German expressionisten and the Russian artist Wasily Kandinsky, briefly shown by the cubisme and afterwards. Its work became in an abstract way almost whole, although nature aims maintained themselves as fish, shells and landscapes in contrasting colours. In Germany she was got in as of the most important artists beside its contemporaries Klee, Marc and Kandinsky.
- nature aims, approx. 1920
nature aims, approx. 1920
gebrandschilderd glass 49.9 x 64.9 cm
work shop J.W. gips, The Hague
The ancient technique of glas-in-lood or brandschilderen got a renewed interest under the modern artists around the eeuwwisseling. Jacoba van Heemskerck made its first composities with glas-in-lood beginning still more intensely want using direct slightly the colours to life 1919th them to bring than possible it is with painter art. Its work exists from abstracted nature aims, which they uses as a main point for its composities with expresssieve line and colour. The sea-green and red grasped in heavy arabesques form of this glas-in-lood compositie recall the beweeglijkheid of living under water.
Jacoba van Heemskerck
(Den Haag 1876-1923 Domburg)
Compositie XI (Vissen)
(met verdunde gouache ingekleurde houtsnede op Japans papier, afm. 24,4 x36 cm., gesigneerd l.o. in potlood Jacoba van Heemskerck en genummerd 16)
This cut is unica. Origin: by means of vererving directly from the collectie F.W. Zeylmans of Emmichoven. Zeylmans was with its friend ir. J.W.E. Buys one of the first bewonderaars of the work of Jacoba van Heemskerck after the death of Jacoba van Heemskerck in august 1923 dedicates its test book to Zeylmans the functioning of the colours on the feeling to her. See for further information on the relation Jacoba van Heemskerck - Zeylmans the catalogue of the municipality museum in The Hague Jacoba van Heemskerck, art ares of the expressionisme, 1982. in this study concerning life and work of Jacoba van Heemskerck on p.85 a similar cut with a something has been printed other drawing in the possession of the municipality museum in The Hague: nr.91