Hunter near a pond, in a clearing
Signed in black lead pencil bottom left: A v. d. Velde
Son and student of Willem van de Velde the Elder and brother of Willem van de Velde the Younger – both famous marine painters – Adriaen did not follow in their footsteps and far from being a specialist, he was equally accomplished at landscapes with figures, views of dunes and beaches, winter scenes, genre painting and a few portraits.
A painter, draughtsman and extremely gifted and prolific engraver, he died prematurely at the age of 36.
This drawing can rightly be called one of the master’s most significant works on account of the fullness of its treatment of nature and the harmonious way in which man and dog are integrated into the scene.
The supple and monumental composition and consummate graphic mastery are characteristic of the mature artist in style.
The subtle arrangement of chiaroscuro and the variety of plant species depicted help to create the illusion of spontaneous naturalism. The sombre, refined tonal combination of greys and russets perfectly conjures up the hunting season of early autumn.