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In Danger

Hendrik Willem Mesdag

European Art

Like the French painters of the Barbizon School whom they greatly admired, Mesdag and his counterparts in the Hague School—so named for the Dutch city where they lived and worked—painted in the open air, capturing the distinctive landscapes and seascapes of the Netherlands. For the Dutch, who relied so heavily on trade and fishing, marine scenes proved extremely compelling subjects. Mesdag shows a small ship with seemingly wind-torn sails tossed by massive, white-capped waves. The high horizon line of Mesdag’s composition and the tonal unity of the scene—with sea and sky nearly indistinguishable—lends particular urgency to the sublime power of the sea.
MEDIUM Oil on canvas
  • Place Made: Europe
  • DATES ca. 1895
    DIMENSIONS 35 13/16 x 49 7/16 in. (91 x 125.6 cm) frame: 51 x 64 1/2 x 5 1/4 in. (129.5 x 163.8 x 13.3 cm)  (show scale)
    SIGNATURE Signed lower right: "H W. Mesdag"
    COLLECTIONS European Art
    MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
    CREDIT LINE Gift of Mrs. James Quinlan in memory of her husband
    RIGHTS STATEMENT No known copyright restrictions
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    CAPTION Hendrik Willem Mesdag (Dutch, 1831-1915). In Danger, ca. 1895. Oil on canvas, 35 13/16 x 49 7/16 in. (91 x 125.6 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of Mrs. James Quinlan in memory of her husband, 26.604
    IMAGE overall, 26.604_SL3.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2015
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