Own a piece of art history with this original oil on panel painting by the illustrious Dutch master and frontrunner of Impressionism, Johan Barthold Jongkind (1819-1891). This painting on panel features a moonlit maritime scene that Jongkind is best known for. This painting is considered “nocturnally perfect” with radiating moonlight in a cloudy sky being perfectly reflected in the shimmering waters underneath. The low horizon, deep contrast in color, and loose yet intentional brushstrokes are quintessential to Jongkind’s style.
In 1874, Jongkind was extended an invitation to participate in the first exhibition of Impressionist works at the Salon in Paris, but declined. Following the rejection of his painting “Moonlight in Rotterdam” at the 1873 Salon, he refused to participate in such exhibitions again. This exact painting was created in 1874, at that pivotal point in the Impressionist movement and in art history as a whole.
This painted panel is framed in an aged gold frame with a paper label on the reverse. Jongkind’s signature and the year 1874 is found in the bottom left corner of the composition.
About the Artist:
Johan Bathold Jongkind (1819-1891) was a Dutch painter and printmaker who is widely recognized as a forefather of Impressionism. After training at the art academy in The Hague, he moved to Monparnasse, Paris. After studying and working for two years, he was accepted into the Paris Salon exhibition. Despite receiving praise from critics Charles Baudelaire and Emile Zola, he experienced little success that induced depression worsened by alcoholism. Jongkind would continue to struggle with his mental health and dependency issues throughout his life. He returned to Holland for 5 years before going back to Paris, renting a studio and developing a style that would be critical to the consequent Impressionist movement. He met Eugène Boudin, Alfred Sisley, and Claude Monet, and became a mentor to the three young artists. Monet attributed the “definitive education” of his artistic eye to Jongkind. Jongkind mostly focused on marine landscapes, consistently employing strong contrasts and lively brushwork. Following in Dutch tradition, most of his works feature a low horizon to emphasize the sky. His legacy is strong in both the art market and in museum collections around the world. Although his contemporaries admired his work and style, his distaste for social gatherings and salons may have been what prevented him from coming to the forefront of the Impressionist movement. However, his background contributions were equally as important to him personally and many other young artists.