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Pieter de Hooch
The messenger of love
8 April – 26 June 2005

Domed Hall

The Rotterdam painter Pieter de Hooch (1629–1684) was one the most prominent artists of the second half of the 17th century, the Golden Age of Netherlandish painting. Like Gerrit Dou, Gerard ter Borch, Caspar Netscher, Gabriel Metsu or Nicholaes Maes, he is often counted as one of the ‘fijnschilders’ or ‘fine painters’. The inimitable aura of their painstakingly conceived interiors and meticulously depicted moments in the lives of well-off Dutch citizens is characterized by an abundance of richly crafted detail and subtly modulated lighting. Since the state of preservation of such paintings can greatly influence how they are interpreted, their condition should by all means be taken into account. Following its extensive restoration, de Hooch’s The messenger of love is the focal point of this small display of carefully selected works by the artist and his contemporaries. For the first time it has at last become possible to again witness the special interplay of colour in this work, as well as its thematic motifs and the multifaceted relationship between the depicted figures. The language of love, of the figures’ gestures and physical presence, and of the illumination and texture are revealed as the work’s central theme.

With the kind support of ECE Projektmanagement

Curator of the exhibition: Dr Martina Sitt

Catalogbox available for € 9 in the online shop >>


Pieter de Hooch , Der Liebesbote, um 1670

Pieter de Hooch , Ein Paar, das in der Stadthalle von Amsterdam flaniert, 1663 - 65

Pieter de Hooch , Junge Frau einen Brief lesend und ein Mann an einem Fenster, um 1668/70

Hamburger Kunsthalle Glockengießerwall 20095 Hamburg
Telephone 040 - 428 131 200 Facsimile 040 - 428 54 34 09