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A 17th century Whaling Scene

Fine art

Object connections:

Collection Fine art, Oil paintings
Gallery locationNot on display

Object details:

Object ID BHC0977
Description Dutch whaling in the Arctic had started in the early 17th century, driven by the economic aims of the Noordsche Compagnie, or North Company, part of the Dutch fleet. Dutch whalers were sailing up the coast of Greenland and of Norway where they found themselves competing with the British. Dutch whaling reached its peak between 1680 and 1725. It is, therefore, not surprising that the pictorial adaptation of this industry in Dutch art, which itself depended on artists’ specialization, also saw an increase during the last quarter of the 17th century. The artist of this pen-painting on panel, whose signature might be read as T. or F. Boon, transferred both the technique of grisaille and the artistic motif of the whalers in Northern seas into the early 18th century. A number of three-masters anchor among the carcasses of the hunted whales, which float between the ships, while sailors in rowing boats prepare to strip the animals’ blubber.
Date made 1724

Artist/Maker T or F Boon
Credit National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, London, Macpherson Collection
Materials grisaille on panel
Measurements Painting: 483 mm x 826 mm
  • A 17th century Whaling Scene (BHC0977)
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