Nicholas Maes - Dutch School
NICHOLAS MAES was born in the Dutch city of Dordrecht. At the age of eighteen he went to Amsterdam where he became one of the many pupils and assistants in the atelier of Rembrandt. It was here that he acquired the warmth of color which characterizes his early genre pictures. The years between 1655 and 1665 were the most productive of his life. The paintings dating from this period are small, simple scenes portraying people engaged in domestic pursuits. When he settled in Antwerp about 1670, his style was radically altered. Possibly under the influence of Van Dyck, Maes abandoned scenes of home life and devoted himself exclusively to portraiture. So completely altered was the matter and the manner of his work that for many years it was believed that two painters named Maes were living at the same time, one in Dordrecht, the other in Brussels. Commissions came readily from the prosperous citizens of Antwerp who were more interested in life-like portraits than in qualities of color and design. At the age of sixty-one Maes died in the city of Antwerp.