The Wallace Collection

The Wallace Collection, A Family Collection, A National Museum, An International Treasure House
Landscape with a Waterfall
  • Jacob van Ruisdael (1628 - 1682)
  • Landscape with a Waterfall
  • Netherlands
  • c. 1670
  • Painting
  • Oil on canvas
  • Image size: 101.2 x 142.2 cm
    Object size: 131 x 169 x 13.5 cm
  • Signature: 'JV Ruisdael', the 'JV' in monogram
  • P56
  • Great Gallery
Images & Media
Further Reading
  • Jacob van Ruisdael, born in Haarlem, was one of the most famous landscape
    painters of seventeenth-century Holland. As the creator of monumental
    compositions, whether dramatic forest scenes or sweeping panoramic views,
    he was the foremost exponent of the classical phase of Dutch landscape
    painting. Ruisdael began painting large horizontal landscapes with waterfalls during the 1660s and early 1670s. Landscapes such as this one were inspired by the waterfalls painted in the 1650s by Allart van Everdingen, who had travelled to Scandinavia. Ruisdael soon became famous for the genre in his own right, creating a poetic and sometimes brooding mood in his landscapes.
    Plays and poems were written in his honour and even his name was seen as
    synonymous with his subject matter, for ‘Ruisdael’ means ‘noisy valley’ in Dutch.
    This painting belonged to the first director of the Louvre, Baron Vivant
    Denon (1747 – 1825), and was described at the latter’s sale in 1826 as “a rustic landscape the melancholy of which inspires reverie. … Joseph Vernet
    said that it seemed you could almost hear the murmur of the water. It was
    Monsieur Denon’s favourite picture.”
    The 4th Marquess of Hertford acquired
    the picture in 1850.