Tuesday, March 31, 2015

WORK OF THE WEEK: Rendez Vous by Maarten Platje

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 ship. 

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 mind. 

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 year 1893.

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.
Contact us with inquiries about this work: 203.869.3664 or art@cavaliergalleries.com