Ridiculously prolific & versatile, the 18th-century Dutch Republic painter from Dordrecht, Aert Schouman (1710 – 1792) was a glass engraver, printmaker, art teacher & collector/dealer.
Schouman did it all; still lifes, biblical & mythological themes, genre, historical and topographical works, portraits, sketches, etchings & mezzotints. He designed tapestries, painted wall-hangings and decorative objects such as fans and snuffboxes. He even designed and painted the glass windows of magic lanterns.
From out of all of all those those endless and complex biblical scenes, mythic tangents & dreamy, bucolic landscapes there’s one thing that just pops out and says “hi” to us today. His graphic natural history studies of exotic bird life – especially the heads, the portraits.
Aert was no scientist, but he was knew his exotic birds in detail & was deeply devoted to renering authenitic, true-to-life depictions of them.
In his portraits of parrots, Schouman has captured and seems to project to us, each bird’s personality.