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Maarten van Heemskerck

painter, draftsman
North Netherlandish
Heemskerk 1498
Haarlem 1574-10-01
He was buried in a new chapel at the northern side of the St. Bavo Church.
Family relationships
this field records any family relationship to one or more other artist(s).
Son of Jacob Willemsz van Veen (1456-1535), farmer, his mother is unknown. From Maarten's will of 31 May 1572 we know that he had a brother Willem and two sisters, Neeltgen and Gerritgen. A son of Neeltgen, Jacques van der Heck, became a great friend of his uncle. He owned several paintings by him and benefited greatly from his uncle's inheritance (Grosshans 1980, p. 18). In 1540 he married Maria Jacobsdr. Coninghs (died 1544) (according to Van Mander she was old, rather ugly and stupid, but very rich). His second wife was Marytgen Gerritsdochter (her father was rich and burgomaster of Haarlem in 1510-1516), whom he married somewhere between 1545-1547(Grosshans 1980, p. 25).
See also
In this field, you will find references to names of groups or to the artists that made/make up groups. You may also come across references to other artists if there was/is question of collaboration without a joint name. This is the case, for instance, with artists who rendered parts of works by other artists (such as with P.P Rubens and J. Brueghel I).
This person/entity in other databases
Biographical information
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  • Delft
    When Van Heemskerck studied in Delft under Jan Lucasz. is not known. many ties of friendship however bound him to Delft all his life: maybe these dated from his apprenticeship years? (Grosshans 1980, p. 19, 25-26)
  • Haarlem 1527 - 1532
    Van Heemskerck came to Haarlem in 1527 to become a pupil of Jan van Scorel, who came from Utrecht in that year fleeing the political upheavels in that city (he stayed till 1530). After finishing his 'Madonna with St. Luke', he went to Italy. (Grosshans 1980, p. 20)
  • Rome 1532-06 - 1536
    Meeting with Giorgio Vasari, probably first week of July; he stayed in Rome with a cardinal, probably Willem van Enckenvoirt (Grosshans p. 20-21); as Van Heemskerck made a drawing of the Arch of Septimus Severus, while it was cleaned from debris (the ruins were cleaned in April for the triumphant entry of Emperor Charles V in June 1536), it is likely, that van Heemskerck was still in Rome in May-June 1536. He probably worked on the decorations for the Emperor's entry in April 1535 (see Dacos/Meijer et al. 1995, under Battista Franco)
  • Tivoli
    Büttner 2000, p. 220
  • Mantua 1536 - 1537
    Stopped here in 1536 or 1537, during his journey back to the Netherlands. A clue for his stay in Italy is, that several of his paintings from 1536-37 are painted on canvas, a material he started to use in Italy. (Grosshans 1980, p. 22)
  • Dordrecht 1537
    Van Heemskerck returned home by way of Dordrecht: he didn't spend the night there, but took a boat to Haarlem the same evening. (see for the curious story of the "murderous inn' in Dordrecht: Grosshans 1980, p. 22-23)
  • Haarlem 1537 - 1572
    His first great assignment here were the wings for Jan van Scorel's "Crucifixion" in the Oude Kerk in Amsterdam (lost in the iconoclasm of the late 1560's) ; in Haarlem Van Heemskerck started a close working relationsship (but also friendship) with Dirck Volckertsz. Coornhert. In 1551-52 he was 'vinder' (expert for painting) of the Guild, in 1554 its Dean.
  • Amsterdam 1572 - 1573
    During the Spanish siege of Haarlem, van Heemskerck moved to Amsterdam in 1572 (with permission of the Burgomasters of Haarlem), where he stayed with his friend Jacob Rauwaert. in the course of the summer of 1573 he returned to Haarlem, where he participated financially in the reconstruction of the city. (Grosshans 1980, p. 18)
  • Haarlem 1573-05 - 1574-10-01
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This field specifies the various subject categories or genres that constitute the oeuvre of the artist in question. The contents of this field are generally based more on the documentation available at the RKD than on the literature.
landscape (as genre), portrait, religious scene, mythology
oil paint, pen in brown ink, chalk
Creation date: 1992-01-10; Last modified date: 2021-10-04


Tatjana Bartsch 20 July 2017

Tatjana Bartsch, »Maarten van Heemskercks Zeichnung des ›Brutus‹ und seine Verbindung zu Kardinal Rodolfo Pio da Carpi«, in: Der Brutus vom Kapitol – Ein Porträt macht Weltgeschichte, hg. v. Agnes Schwarzmaier, Ausstellungskatalog Berlin 2010, München 2010, S. 80–89

Tatjana Bartsch, »Transformierte Transformation. Zur fortuna der Antikenstudien Maarten van Heemskercks im 17. Jahrhundert«, in: Wissensästhetik. Wissen über die Antike in ästhetischer Vermittlung. Jahrestagung des SFB 644 vom 7.–9.12.2006, hg. v. Ernst Osterkamp, Berlin 2008 (Transformationen der Antike, 6), S. 113–160
Tatjana Bartsch 20 July 2017

Tatjana Bartsch, »Bildbesprechung. Maarten van Heemskerck: Natura (der Mensch ist zur Arbeit geboren), 1572«, in: Imagination des Himmels, hg. v. Horst Bredekamp u.a., Berlin 2007 (Bildwelten des Wissens: Kunsthistorisches Jahrbuch für Bildkritik, 5,2), S. 60–64

Tatjana Bartsch, »Kapitell. Colosseum. Überlegungen zu Heemskercks Bildfindungen am Beispiel von fol. 28 r. des römischen Skizzenbuches«, in: Zentren und Wirkungsräume der Antikenrezeption. Zur Bedeutung von Raum und Kommunikation für die neuzeitliche Transformation der griechisch-römischen Antike«, hg. v. Kathrin Schade u.a., Münster 2007, S. 27–38, T. 1–4
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