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Dutch Painting 1400 – 1950: introduction to the Art History of the Netherlands


Admission requirements

Sufficient proficiency in English.


The Netherlands have made a rich contribution to art history with many world famous artists and movements. The twelve lectures of this thematic course on Dutch painting offer an overview of the visual arts from the 15th century to the present covering the characteristics of important artists and movements in the context of Dutch culture and history. It covers Flemish Primitives such as Jan van Eyck and Rogier van der Weyden, important 16th-century painters such as Hieronymus Bosch and Pieter Brueghel the elder, and famous painters from Dutch Golden Age such as Rembrandt, Hals, Jacob van Ruijsdael and Vermeer with an emphasis on developments in style, function and meaning of their paintings. Furthermore the course discusses the many faces of modernism in the late 19th and the early 20th centuries focusing on artists such as Vincent van Gogh and Piet Mondrian.

Course objectives

The course offers an overview of artistic development in Dutch art from 1400 up to and including the 20th century, as well as various academic approaches to the visual arts. – Students will acquire skills in recognizing differences in style and artistic developments. The course provides insight into the cultural and historical environment in which Dutch art flourished. – Students will develop an introductory-level familiarity with some of the major theoretical and methodological challenges involved in studying Dutch Art


Tuesday from 13.00 till 15.00 hrs. Please, consult the Dutch Studies timetable

Mode of instruction

Lecture ### Course Load

Total course load for the course: 5 EC is 140 hours. – Hours spent on attending lectures: 2 hours per week x 12 weeks = 24 hours – Time for studying the compulsory literature and preparation for the lectures: 2 hours per week x 12 = 24 hours – preparation for the first test: 36 hours – preparation for the second test: 56 hours

Assessment method

The course has two exams, both consisting of five open questions on developments of style and characteristics of movements and famous artists, based on the reader and other course material available on Blackboard. The first exam in the mid-session interval covers art of the 15th and 16th centuries and determines 40% of the final mark. The second exam in December covers the Golden Age to the present and determines 60% of the final mark. Marks lower than 5 for the separate tests are not allowed. The average of both exams should be at least 5.5. If the final mark after the resit is lower than 5.5, students have to pass both parts in the following year.


Blackboard is used for course materials (a reader), the power points presented during the lectures, and sample questions.

Reading list



Registration Studeren à la carte and Contractonderwijs

Registration Studeren à la carte via:
Registration Contractonderwijs via:


There are two tests, one during the midsession interval and one in the week before Christmas. Resits for both tests are in January. No exceptions will be made, so there is no possibility to take these tests individually at different times. Students leaving before Christmas and not returning in January should consider that they have to pass both test the first time.