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Artists Biography

Fredrik Marinus Kruseman

Dutch 1816 - 1882
Born in Haarlem in 1816, Fredrik Marinus Kruseman showed an early talent for drawing. He was the fourth son of Benjamin Philip Kruseman, a Lutheran hat-maker, and cousin to both Cornelis Kruseman, Director of the Royal Academy of Fine Arts of Amsterdam and a painter of historical and biblical subjects, and Jan Adam Kruseman, a historical painter and portraitist. Fredrik studied under many of the great Dutch landscapists of the nineteenth century school.
From 1833 he was apprenticed to Jan Reekers from whom he learnt drawing from nature and the rules of perspective. Between 1832 and 1833 Kruseman also attended classes at the City Drawing School and he studied painting with Nicholas Roosenboom, who had a studio near where Kruseman lived. Roosenboom was the son-in-law and pupil of the great artist Andreas Schelfhout and it is likely that Kruseman would have come into contact with Schelfhout as he was a regular visitor to Roosenboom’s studio.
In the September of 1833 the artist made his debut at the Exhibition for Living Masters in The Hague, exhibiting a landscape.

Kruseman travelled extensively in Northern Europe before finally settling in Brussels in 1841. Between 1852 and 1856, Kruseman lived once again in the environs of Haarlem where he took many trips around the vicinity of the city, but he returned to Brussels in 1856 where he remained for the rest of his life. He exhibited in Amsterdam and The Hague between 1833 and 1856.

Winter landscapes make up about two thirds of Kruseman’s oeuvre and around 1860 his art came into full fruition. His tree groups became increasingly more convincing and he introduced his first coral-like tree branches. The depth of his panoramic landscapes became more marked and the cool grey-blue tones steadily gave way to a much warmer palette. Kruseman perfected his rendering of the jet-black mirror surface of the ice and the marks left by skaters and his best works are set in the fading light of early evening often showing the warmth of a light emanating from a small interior somewhere in the painting. He worked well until the late seventies and eventually died in Sint-Gillis near Brussels on 25 May 1882.

The work of Fredrik Marinus Kruseman is represented in several museums including the Bibliothèque Royale Albert I, Brussels, the Frans Hals Museum, Haarlem, and the Nijmeegs Museum de Commanderie van Sint Jan, Nijmegen, the Stedelijk Musea Kortrijk, Coutrai, Belgium, the Museum der Bildenden Kunste, Leipzig and the Hamburger Kunsthalle, Germany.

Works by this artist…

  • Figures Skating on a Frozen River
    Figures Skating on a Frozen River
    ( ref : 13948 )
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