The seventeenth century was a time of exceptional mobility for Netherlandish artists. This mobility had a profound impact on artistic developments, stimulating innovation and creativity in the Netherlands as well as abroad. Whereas most artists undertook a relatively short study trip, others decided to settle down and shape their life in a new environment. This study traces the integration process — as artists and as migrants in general — of Aert Mytens, Louis Finson, Abraham Vinck, Hendrick De Somer and Matthias Stom in Naples between 1575 and 1655. Departing from the idea that the experience of every migrant is specific to their background and skills, The Neapolitan Lives and Careers of Netherlandish Immigrant Painters (1575-1655) examines the challenges each of these five artists faced, the choices they made and the opportunities they grasped. The dynamics of art and society in Naples, the bustling capital of the Spanish viceroyalty, forms the context for their lives and careers.
Marije Osnabrugge is a postdoctoral researcher at the Université de Genève. She has published in The Burlington Magazine and Nederlands Kunsthistorisch Jaarboek.