Yesterday we went to the National Gallery to see an exhibition entitled “Pride of Place: Dutch Cityscapes of the Golden Age. It was sensational. Here’s the cover of the take-away – I will mail you one so you can take a peek.

This one is by Jan van der Heyden, “The Keizergracht and the Westerkerk in Amsterdam,” c.1667-70.


Here’s another one that I particularly liked. It’s by Jacob van Ruisdael. “Haarlem, with the Bleaching Fields.” c. 1670-75.


The 17th century Dutch city was very interesting. Dense, watery, lots of great looking public spaces, and almost always very distinct edges. I guess that had to do with security, and probably also something to do with demarcating agricultural areas from urban areas. You need a lot of food to support an urban population, and especially when you can’t get to Safeway for that farm raised salmon from Taiwan.