Two fishing cutters in stormy seas, 1831
Clear colours, precise outlines and fine brush- work make this small format a technically particularly high-quality seascape. The fishing boats are just as me- ticulously worked out as the sea and the sky – those features that we already know from the Dutch painters of the 17th century, but some two hundred years later.
The Belgian painter Louis Charles Verboeckhoven grew up in Ghent, where he first became interested in marine painting. From 1827 he was admitted to salons and annual exhibitions (in Amsterdam, The Hague and Brussels, among others), where he made a name for himself as a talented artist. Probably over the years he was able to establish himself as an independent painter, which is why he no longer needed to draw attention to himself and therefore his exhibition activity decreased. Verboeckhoven travelled the Dutch, French and British coasts several times. Towards the end of his career he becomes a member of the Rijksakademie. Although the depictions sometimes seem somewhat stereotypical, Verboeckhoven‘s oeuvre stands out for its technical brilliance and nuanced rendering of the sky and weather conditions, as well as careful execution of different types of boats and ships. Paintings like this enjoy great popularity in bourgeois circles, as the former closeness to nature is perceived as a nostalgic point of reference during the upheaval of the Industrial Revolution.