Gerson Digital

Under the Gerson Digital flag, the RKD, in close collaboration with various (inter) national partners, is conducting a large-scale investigation into Dutch and Flemish painting from the seventeenth century in an international perspective.


It traces the careers of Dutch and Flemish artists who worked abroad in the seventeenth century, and explore the way they exchanged ideas with colleagues in other countries. There also is a focus on the important part that foreign patrons, collectors and dealers played by buying Dutch and Flemish paintings, both in the Low Countries and elsewhere. This enabled local artists to get to know those works, even many years later, absorb their idiom, and channel it into their own paintings.

The starting point for this new project was the influential but now obsolete publication by Horst Gerson (1907-1978), Ausbreitung und Nachwirkung der holländischen Malerei des 17. Jahrhunderts (1942), which considers the dispersal and reception of Dutch painting in just about every European country.

The aim is to produce a fully revised, critically annotated and illustrated digital publication, and to stimulate and publish new research. A secondary aim is to enrich and deepen the art-historical information on the international context of Netherlandish art in RKD Explore.

Published volumes