Gerbrand van den Eeckhout


Canvas, oil. 86 x 77 cm
Bottom right signature and date: G.V.Eeckhout 1642

Old Testament: Judges 6, 11-21 “The angel of the Lord stretched out the end of the rod that was in his hand and touched the meat and the unleavened bread; and fire came out of the stone and ate the flesh and the unleavened bread; and the Angel of the Lord hid from his sight.”

Eeckhout, as a faithful student and follower of Rembrandt, continued the research of the great Dutch artist in solving the problem of transmitting bright light through pictorial means. As you know, light in Rembrandt’s paintings was symbolic. The biblical story of the boy Gideon, his meeting with the Angel, gave Eeckhout an excellent reason to use the motif of dazzling light in the picture, symbolically expressing his divine nature through the spontaneous glow of the Angel’s figure. The Dutch artist not only creates a strong black and white contrast between the bright figure of the Angel and the gloomy environment surrounding him, painted using tonal coloring. He uses the impasto texture of painting to depict the folds of the Angel's chiton. The incident light shimmers and is refracted many times in the high relief of the strokes, creating the desired effect of spontaneous glow.

Sumowski, Werner: Gemälde der Rembrandt-Schüler, Landau/Pfalz 1983, Band II, Cat. No.392, p. 725, ill. p. 755.

The painting was exhibited at the exhibition: “Rembrandt and His Students”, Montreal-Toronto 1969, Cat. No. 44 with illustration (see label on back).