Bartholomeus van der Helst

The life and work of Bartholomeus van der Helst 1613 – 1670

Bartholomeus was born in the Grote Houtstraat in Haarlem in 1613, as the son of an innkeeper, Lodewijck Lowijs van der Helst (1579 – 1638) and Aeltgen Bartels (deceased in 1636).

He married Anna du Pire in Amsterdam on 4 May and they had two children, Susanne (1638-1703) and Lodewijck (1642- unknown where and when deceased). Lodewijck was trained as a painter by his father.

Van der Helst died on 16 December 1670 in Amsterdam.

The work of Bartholomeus van der Helst

Bartholomeus was apprenticed to Nicolaes Eliasz Pickenoy and was seen as a rival of Rembrandt. He had a different style of painting, a smoother style that was adopted by Rembrandt’s pupils, including Ferdinand Bol and Govert Flinck.

Van der Helst painted portraits of the better-off, such as mayors but also Mary Stuart. He also painted group portraits of regents and members of the militia. The backgrounds were often painted by others. Seascapes by Willem van de Velde II and landscapes by Jacob van Ruisdael and Jan Hackaert.

His first known work is the Regent piece that he painted for the Walen orphanage in 1637. The painting belongs to the collection of the Amsterdam Museum.

Bartholomeus was closely involved in setting up the Amsterdam Art Society.

Van der Helst Bartholomeus – Walenweeshuis – collectie Amsterdams museum

A masterpiece of Bartholomeus van der Helst on your wall?

Would you like one of the masterpieces of Bartolomeus on your wall? Have a look at his paintings and choose your favorite painting in your own desired size.