Jan Lievens (1607-1674)
Lievens was already an apprentice painter at the age of eight: first in his native Leiden and from 1617 to 1619 under Pieter Lastman in Amsterdam. Later, he moved back to Leiden, where he worked together with Rembrandt for over five years. After 1631, Lievens struck out in a different direction; he spent three years in London. His style began to change under the influence of Anthony van Dyck’s portraits. And when he saw Rubens’s work in Antwerp in 1635, Lievens adopted the Baroque style completely. In 1644, Lievens returned to Amsterdam, where he remained for the rest of his life. He received major commissions in the Dutch Republic. Stadholder Frederik Hendrik’s widow, Amalia van Solms, invited him to paint for the Orange room at Huis ten Bosch. The city of Amsterdam was another major patron. Lievens provided a canvas for the burgomasters’ chamber in the new town hall.