The Passage Boat (c.1650) by Aelbert Cuyp

The Passage Boat - Aelbert Cuyp - c.1650

Artwork Information

TitleThe Passage Boat
ArtistAelbert Cuyp
Datec.1650
Mediumoil
Dimensions124.4 x 145 cm
Art MovementBaroque
Current LocationRoyal Collection (Buckingham Palace), London, UK
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About The Passage Boat

The artwork entitled “The Passage Boat” is a creation of the eminent artist Aelbert Cuyp, dating to approximately the year 1650. This piece is executed in oil medium and is a representative example of the Baroque art movement. Measuring 124.4 by 145 centimeters, the work is classified in the marina genre and is housed in the Royal Collection located at Buckingham Palace in London, United Kingdom.

“The Passage Boat” by Aelbert Cuyp depicts a serene maritime scene, focusing on the activities of daily life at sea. The foreground is dominated by a large passage boat, filled with passengers and crew, as the vessel’s substantial sails are billowed by the wind—a testament to the skill of the seafarers and the dependence on natural elements for movement. Cuyp’s mastery in rendering the luminous effects of light and his delicate treatment of the sky is evident, with voluminous clouds creating a backdrop that adds a sense of atmospheric depth to the composition. A secondary boat to the right and several others in the distance provide a sense of scale and bustling waterway activity.

The sense of tranquility and the daily rhythms of life near the water are captured eloquently in this painting, with the human figures engaged in various tasks, contributing to the narrative and vitality of the scene. Cuyp’s palette is characterized by warm, earthy tones juxtaposed with the cool blues and grays of the sky and water, which enhances the naturalistic quality of the artwork. The marina setting is typical of Dutch Golden Age paintings, where the connection and reverence for maritime endeavors were commonly depicted.

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