A loan exhibition of drawings by the "little Dutch masters" of the Seventeenth century will be held at the Germanic Museum from Wednesday, March 25 to Saturday, April 25. The purpose of the show is to supplement the exhibition of Rembrandt etchings held at the Fogg Museum, and to illustrate the artistic activities of Rembrandt's contemporaries. The works of these artists have been sadly neglected by American collectors and as a result, in spite of their great charm, they are exceedingly rare. The Germanic Museum has gathered together a notable group of over fifty drawings from public and private collections all over the country.
These drawings illustrate the great variety of artistic activity that was taking place in Holland in the Seventeenth century. It was a time when no phase of Dutch life was too insignificant to find a place on their canvases. A suspicious wife, the visit of an amorous doctor, neighbors gossiping, a bit of landscape, friends playing cards, peasants drinking and quarreling, ships riding at anchor, a vase of flowers, all were depicted with great keenness of observation, sympathy, and consummate skill.
In the realm of landscape, there are the sunny restful Italian scenes of Jan Both and Nicholas Berchem. Some-what more Dutch in character are the sweeping compositions of Jan van Goyen and Solomon and Jacob Ruisdael, the gloomy moonlight view of Aart van der Neer, the wind-swept crags of Everdingen, and the quiet seas of William van der Velde. The genre painters are well represented by the rollicking drawings of Adrian van Ostade and Jan Steen, and the somewhat more restrained compositions of Nicholas Maes and Cornelius Dusart. Painters of animals are illustrated by brilliant little sketches of Paul Potter and Gysbert Hondecoeter, while still life is present in the form of the broad powerful drawings of Jan van Huysums.