Sweethearts, Smokers, and Merrymakers

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The New York Sun

The Metropolitan Museum of Art has mounted an exhibition around eleven signed works of Frans Hals, considered by many to be the greatest master of Dutch art after Rembrandt. “Several of the Museum’s paintings by Hals are famous, especially the early Merrymakers at Shrovetide and the so-called Yonker Ramp and His Sweetheart,” according to the museum.

“The Metropolitan Museum has two genre scenes by Hals, as well as seven fine portraits dating from the 1620s through the 1650s. Also included in the exhibition are two loans from private collections in New York—the small, exquisite Portrait of Samuel Ampzing, on copper, and the well-known The Fisher Girl. A selection of other Netherlandish paintings from the Museum’s collection by artists including Rubens, Van Dyck, Steen, and Brouwer set Hals’s work in the context of his native Haarlem and help clarify how exceptional his animated poses and virtuoso brushwork were at the time.”

“Frans Hals in the Metropolitan Museum” runs through October 10. The museum is located at 1000 Fifth Avenue, between 82nd and 83rd streets. More information is available at 212-535-7710 and metmuseum.org.

Franklin Einspruch is an artist and writer.

The New York Sun

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