Where Promoting And Encouraging The Arts Is A Way Of Life
Tuesday, March 31, 2015
WORK OF THE WEEK: Rendez Vous by Maarten Platje
Rendez Vous, 2015
Oil on canvas
27 5/8 x 35 1/2 inches
Cavalier Galleries presents a masterful new painting
by Dutch maritime artist Maarten Platje. This painting depicts the
schooner Varuna, a vessel with an outstanding career as a pilot
The history of regular pilotage in American ports is old
but obscure. In the early years pilots were not organized as a body under
government of local control. In 1783 a law was passed in Boston
authorizing the Governor with the advice of his council to “appoint
suitable persons as pilot for various ports in the
Commonwealth”. Many boats were not built with pilot service in
During the famous Portland Gale in November 1898 the
Varuna was one of the lucky survivors. She had just departed Boston when
the terrible storm struck. The captain managed to get offshore to ride
out the storm, although the ship barely cleared the shoals of Cape Cod.
The scene of this painting features the Varuna approaching
the full-rigged merchant ship Dawpool heading for Boston Harbour in the
Maarten Platje was born in The Netherlands in
1967 and studied at Ars Aemula Naturae Art Academy in
Leiden. After his studies Platje spent part of his youth as a sailor
before devoting himself to the painting of ships. In 1996 Platje was
officially invited by the Royal Dutch Navy to embark on a frigate during
NATO operations in the Mediterranean waters around the former Yugoslavia.
He followed in the steps of the famous Dutch marine painter Willem van de
Velde (1611-1693), the official artist for the Dutch Fleet in his time.
This resulted in a series of paintings illustrating various naval
operations. The paintings are on a permanent display at the Naval Museum
in Den Helder and at the Museum of the Marine Corps of the Royal
Netherlands Navy in Rotterdam.
Platje’s marine paintings are carefully-orchestrated compositions created
from an assembly of old pictures, drawings and ship models discovered at
antique stores or placed at his disposal from private collections.