Jan Adam Kruseman

The painter Jan Adam Kruseman 1804 – 1862

The life and work of Jan Adam Kruseman

Jan Adam Kruseman was born in Haarlem on February 12 in 1804 as the son of Jan Alexander and Dorothea Steenkamp. In 1819 Jan Adam left for Amsterdam to become a member of the Drawing Academy and was taught by his nephew Cornelis Kruseman. From 1822 to 1824, Jan Adam lived in Brussels and Paris and studied with Francois-Joseph Navez and Jaques Louis David, both neo-classical painters.

Jan Adam Kruseman paints historical and religious pieces, but most of them are portraits of people of nobility and wealthy citizens. Jan Adam also painted many portraits of the royal family. His portraits show not only a self-righteousness and satisfaction of the person, but also a detailed picture of the clothing and jewelry.

When Jan Adam Kruseman returned to Amsterdam on May 11, 1826, he married Alida de Vries and together they had 7 children, including Jan Theodoor, who later became a painter as well. In 1836 the family was extended with Alida’s nephew, Petrus Augustus de Genestet. Who Later on became a well-known Dutch poet and theologian.  On November 19 1830 Jan Adam became director of the Royal Academy of the Visual Arts in Amsterdam. One of his many disciples is Joseph Israëls. In 1839, Jan Adam Kruseman was one of the co-founders of the Arti et Amicitae artists’ association. In 1844 Jan was knighted in the Order of the Dutch Lion.

After moving to Lille in 1851 to Driebergen in 1854, Jan Adam returned to Haarlem in 1856, where he died on 17 March 1862.

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