An Extensive Estuary Landscape with the Story of Mercury and Herse

Tobias Verhaechtabout 1610

The J. Paul Getty Museum

The J. Paul Getty Museum

A landscape specialist, Verhaecht was the first artist to teach Peter Paul Rubens. In this mythological scene, the maiden Herse is spied from above by the amorous messenger god Mercury as she walks with her sisters.

Verhaecht used some of the most distinctive elements of his landscape drawings in this scene--a horizon that appears to extend almost infinitely and a mountainous coastline described with small, looping lines and strategically applied light blue wash. The artist frequently employed these stylistic devices to define landscapes of fantastical and marvelous proportions.

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  • Title: An Extensive Estuary Landscape with the Story of Mercury and Herse
  • Creator: Tobias Verhaecht
  • Date: about 1610
  • Physical Dimensions: 24.3 x 35.3 cm (9 9/16 x 13 7/8 in.)
  • External Link: Find out more about this object on the Museum website.
  • Medium: Pen and brown ink and brush and brown and blue wash
  • Source Credit Line: The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles
  • Object Type: Drawing
  • Object Status: Permanent Collection
  • Number: 2005.32
  • Markings: Lower center, collector's mark of J.G. Schumann (L. 2344); dry stamp of F. Abbott (L. 970)
  • Display Location: Not currently on view
  • Department: Drawings
  • Culture: Flemish
  • Classification: Drawings


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