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Willaerts, Adam

London, 1577 - Utrecht, 1664

He arrived in Holland around 1602 and was accepted as a citizen of Utrecht in 1608. His first surviving painting dates from that year, A Fleet from the Dutch East India Company heading East arriving on an Island off the West Coast of Africa.
In 1611, he was a founding member of the Utrecht Guild of Saint Luke, where he repeatedly held the position of dean (1620–1622, 1624–1631 and 1636–1637). Despite having always worked in Utrecht, he specialised in beach scenes, harbour views and sea storms. These scenes show the clear influence of Hendrick Cornelisz. Vroom (around 1566–1640), although his style is more decorative and lacks the latter’s skill in depicting vessels. He had a large workshop where his three sons also worked: Abraham (around 1604–1669), Cornelis (around 1600–1660) and Isaak (1620–1693). In 1650, his son-in-law Willem Ormea (+1673) also started to work there; he was a painter of fish still lifes who collaborated with his father-in-law on his characteristic beach scenes with fishermen (Posada Kubissa, T.: Pintura holandesa en el Museo Nacional del Prado. Catálogo razonado, 2009, p. 262).

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