Dutch 17th century painting ADED1026E

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: Short Courses
  • Credits: 10
  • Level: Level 2 (SCQF level 8)
  • Typically Offered: Semester 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes

Short Description

The 17th century is regarded as the golden age of Dutch painting. The Dutch succeeded in establishing a Republic, independent of Hapsburg rule. The Dutch economy boomed and the art market flourished. New categories of painting developed, celebrating Dutch pride and achievement and reflecting the ideas and concerns of contemporary society. The artists who produced them were as varied in styles as the subjects they painted. This course will assess the remarkable and influential contribution to European painting made by masters such as Rembrandt, Hals, Vermeer, Ruisdael and others, in the historical context of the new Dutch Republic.


20 hours over 10 weeks

Block 2: Thursday, 10.00-12.00

Requirements of Entry

None. Some previous knowledge of art history is desirable but not essential.

Excluded Courses

Dutch 17th century painting (ADED1026E)


Essay (approximately 2000 words) from a choice of titles (70%); visual test: identification and discussion of slides (30%). Alternative assessment can be arranged for students whose disabilities would prevent them performing satisfactorily in the visual test.

Course Aims

This course aims to:

■ Extend and develop students' basic knowledge of art history through the focussed analysis of Dutch 17th century painting. 

■ Develop students' critical awareness of the subject by identifying the stylistic and cultural components of Dutch 17th century painting, examining the development of artistic categories, such as portraiture, flower-pieces and still life painting. 

■ Introduce students to some of the issues of methodology, historiography and context which are associated with this area of study.

■ Foster further transferable skills such as visual skills, independent learning and written presentation skills.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of the course students should be able to:

■ Articulate, verbally and in writing, a comprehensive knowledge of Dutch 17th century painting and its contribution to European art.

■ Critically analyse 17th century Dutch painting, in terms of its imagery, function, methods of production and stylistic and cultural components.

■ Identify and evaluate art historical approaches to, and interpretations of, individual Dutch 17th century works of art. 

■ Demonstrate personal study skills in art-historical research and the ability to pursue investigation of a work of art or a theme using library, museum and gallery resources.

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.