Artwork of the Week: January 31

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Isack van Ostade (Dutch, 1621–1649), Skaters Near a Village

Isack van Ostade (Dutch, 1621–1649), Skaters Near a Village, oil on wood panel, 1640s. 12 ¾ x 17 ¾ in. Gallery 23

A subject very important to Isack van Ostade, this wintry scene of everyday life combined landscape and genre painting. In fact, he made more than two hundred works from observation that depicted similar scenes and activities, despite having a short-lived painting career of only about ten years. He began as a student of his brother Adriaen, who is also represented in Gallery 23. With this skating scene, painted using only a handful of colors, van Ostade made the everyday life of peasants in the frozen winter look lighthearted and almost carefree.

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