Portrait of the Haarlem Shell Collector Jan Govertsen van der Aer

Hendrick Goltzius1603

Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen

Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen
Rotterdam, Netherlands

The famous Haarlem based painter and engraver Hendrick Goltzius has painted an informal portrait of his friend, the textile merchant Jan Govertsen van der Aar. The proud merchant is dressed in a black tunic with a simple open collar. On his lap is his valuable collection of shells. Portraiture was rather boring for a history painter like Goltzius. Someone who depicted action and passion and preferred fiction to fact had no interest in painting a likeness. That rule did not apply to friends, of course, and Jan Govertsz., a collector of shells, was drawn and painted by Goltzius more than once. His sleepy head is even found in several of Goltzius' history paintings.


  • Title: Portrait of the Haarlem Shell Collector Jan Govertsen van der Aer
  • Date Created: 1603
  • Theme: Portrait
  • Physical Dimensions: w827 x h1075 cm (Without frame)
  • Painter: Hendrick Goltzius
  • Original Title: De Haarlemse schelpenverzamelaar Jan Govertsen van der Aer
  • More Info: Link - Read more about Golden Age - Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen - http://collectie.boijmans.nl/en/disclaimer/
  • Artist Information: Hendrik Goltzius was an engraver from Haarlem. In the beginning he mainly engraved works designed by other artists, but later also used his own designs. Together with Cornelisz. Van Haarlem and Carel van Mander, Goltzius in Haarlem worked in a mannered style. Between 1590 and 1591, Goltzius travelled through Italy, which would have a large influence on his work. He only started painting in 1600. From this time, his paintings and also his engravings slowly distanced themselves from the mannered twisted stances. Goltzius's engravings, whether of his own or other artists' designs, are numerous and of the highest quality.
  • Type: Painting
  • Rights: Lent by Stichting P. en N. de Boer 1960, http://collectie.boijmans.nl/en/disclaimer/
  • External Link: Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen
  • Medium: Oil on canvas

Get the app

Explore museums and play with Art Transfer, Pocket Galleries, Art Selfie, and more


Google apps