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Carel Willink

Terrace with Pergola, 1951

Starting in 1935, classical statues assume an increasingly prominent role in the paintings of Carel Willink (1900-1983). He always placed them in unexpected surroundings. He wasn’t necessarily interested in the original antique sculptures, but rather the weathered copies that he found in the gardens ... of the New Palace in Potsdam, the parks of Versailles and Sceaux in Paris and the garden of the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam. The eroded and mossy state of these ‘garden sculptures’ added to the general atmosphere of melancholy and transience. This dovetailed with Willink’s pessimistic take on the world. In the same year, Willink moved to a canal-side house on the Ruysdaelkade in Amsterdam, where he lived for the rest of his life. From his studio in the attic, he could see the Rijksmuseum and the adjacent sculpture garden. He was not only inspired by the sculptures, but also by the pergola – a covered archway – as we see in this work.
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Carel Willink
Terrace with Pergola
Oil on canvas
71 x 91 cm (h x w)
Type of object
© Pictoright/Sylvia Willink

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