A new monograph on Jacob van Loo (1614-1670) was published by Judith Noorman in April.
This book focuses on the interrelationship between Jacob van Loo’s art, honor, and career, Noorman argues that Van Loo’s lifelong success and unblemished reputation were by no means incompatible, as art historians have long assumed, with his specialization in painting nudes and his conviction for manslaughter. Van Loo’s iconographic specialty – the nude – allowed his clientele to present themselves as judges of beauty and display their mastery of decorum, while his portraiture perfectly expressed his clients’ social and political ambitions. Van Loo’s honor explains why his success lasted a lifetime, whereas that of Rembrandt, Frans Hals, and Vermeer did not. Taking an interdisciplinary approach, this book reinterprets the manslaughter case as a sign that Van Loo’s elite patrons recognized him as a gentleman and highly-esteemed artist.
Judith Noorman is an art historian at the University of Amsterdam. In 2016 she guest curated the exhibition Rembrandt’s Naked Truth. Drawing Nude Models in the Golden Age at the Rembrandt House Museum in Amsterdam.
Art, Honor and Success in The Dutch Republic: The Life and Career of Jacob van Loo
312 pp, 110 color illustrations
Amsterdam (Amsterdam University Press) 2020