Jheronimus Bosch Art Center

Het experiment van Jeroen Bosch - Aantekeningen bij de tentoonstelling in Den Bosch

Van der Stap 1967
Van der Stap, T.
Genre: Nonfiction, art history
Uitgever: Streven, vol. 35, nr. 2 (November 1967), pp. 128-131
Uitgave datum: 1967

Van der Stap 1967


“Het experiment van Jeroen Bosch – Aantekeningen bij de tentoonstelling in Den Bosch” (T. van der Stap) 1967

[in: Streven, vol. 35, nr. 2 (November 1967), pp. 128-131]

[Not mentioned in Gibson 1983]


Van der Stap offers some notes on the occasion of the ’s-Hertogenbosch Bosch Exhibition (1967). The monsters Bosch paints are impossible imaginations but we accept them because they are presented to us as tangible, physical and concrete realities. Bosch follows a long tradition but at the same time he experiments: he tries out how far he can go in the plausible depiction of an impossible bizarre world. On the other hand his landscapes are very realistic. Here we meet another Bosch: his meticulous observation of nature would prove to be pivotal for the art of painting in the future.


Recently it has become more and more clear that Bosch found the inspiration for his monsters and devils in popular books, in astrological descriptions of the children of the planets, in the margins of books of hours, in the moralizing treatises and idioms of his times. Bosch’s dreamworld marks a phase of transition. For the last time the medieval world of ideas reaches an apotheosis which will only wear out into manierism with the followers and imitators. But at the same time these paintings, filled with illusions, announce an age that no longer worries about dreams or devils.


[explicit 1st January 2015]

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