Cornelis Vroom the younger

1591 - 1661

Flemish Landscape Painter

Cornelis Vroom the younger Biography

Painter and draughtsman, son of Hendrick Vroom. He studied with his father and collaborated with him on the painting Dutch Ships Ramming Spanish Galleys off the Flemish Coast (1617; Amsterdam, Rijksmus.); Cornelis provided the figures and the background. Only one signed marine painting by Cornelis is known, the Spanish Men-of-War Engaging Barbary Corsairs (1615; London, N. Mar. Mus.). The Battle of Lepanto (Ham House, Surrey, NT) is unsigned but plausibly attributed to him. By c. 1620 he seems to have abandoned marine painting and joined the group of young Haarlem artists whose drawings pioneered a new realistic landscape style. Jan and Esaias van de Velde and Willem Buytewech strongly influenced Cornelis's drawings and early landscape paintings, which are also reminiscent of Adam Elsheimer's arcadian scenes, known in the Netherlands through Hendrick Goudt's popular engravings. The first known dated landscape painting, River View with Boating (1622; London, F. Paynhurst priv. col., see Keyes, fig. 23), anticipates the river-shore landscapes of Salomon van Ruysdael. Other paintings and drawings feature wooded scenes and panoramic views of dunes and countryside. The panoramas, with their simple horizontal division of sky and ground, recall the compositional structure of many of Hendrick Vroom's marines, including the diagonal foreground repoussoir, which now sets off a brightly lit expanse of fields in place of the water surface, as in the drawing Country House before an Inland Sea (New Haven, CT, Yale U. A.G.). Cornelis's late paintings, such as Edge of a Forest (1651; Copenhagen, Stat. Mus. Kst) and Forest View with Cattle (late 1650s; Rotterdam, Mus. Boymans-van Beuningen), show a great affinity with Jacob van Ruisdael's wooded scenes. The contact between the two artists was mutually beneficial: Vroom's early work, particularly the drawings, played an important part in van Ruisdael's development.