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Wheatfield with Church

Jacob van Ruisdael

Wheatfield with Church, 17th Century

Oil on Canvas


Gift of Dr. William Serri 

Noted for his innovation and versatility, Van Ruisdael was a principle figure in Dutch landscape painting of the late 17th century. Unlike his contemporaries, Van Ruisdael rejected the popular Italianate style in favor of naturalistic compositions featuring a wide variety of landscape types. These included mountain scenes, woodland and river settings, waterfalls, beaches and dunes, seascapes, panoramas, and winter scenes. Van Ruisdael often utilized large forms, anchoring his paintings, and a broad color range, producing roughly seven hundred paintings in his lifetime. 

Condition of the Artwork (2009): 

The paint layer has been very badly abraded during a previous cleaning. Abrasions are visible virtually everywhere. The clouds at right have been heavily inpainted, and some very poorly matched repaint is visible in the dark foreground. In general, the inpainting that has been done does not look good.

Conservation Treatment Proposed: 

  • The appearance of the painting can be greatly improved with careful cleaning and inpainting.
  • Remove/reduce the discolored varnish.
  • Remove/reduce old repaints with the appropriate cleaning agents.
  • Remove/reduce any residues of old grime and varnish embedded in paint interstices.
  • Apply an isolating layer of a conservation quality varnish overall.
  • Fill and inpaint paint losses and abrasions with conservation quality materials. The appearance will be much improved but this will very likely never look like an undamaged picture again.
  • Apply a conservation quality finish varnish overall.
  • All materials used will be appropriate and conservation quality. All work will adhere to the highest standards of the field.  

Estimated Cost of Treatment:  $8,000.00