Gerard Terborch surpassed his father, the artist Terboch the Elder, in celebrity and craftsmanship, becoming one of the famous and main Dutch masters of golden age painting.
Gerard was born in December 1617, in the town of Zwolle, in the Netherlands. His artistic talents appeared at a fairly early age. This is evidenced by the drawings made by the boy when he was only 8 years old, but they are quite perfect and mature. Father carefully kept these children's works and therefore they have survived to this day. They are currently on display at the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam.
Of course, the father was the first teacher of painting of the future artist. But their house was often visited by the famous "dumb from Kampen" - Hendrik Averkamp. Apparently, under his influence, in very early sketches of Gerard there are works with skating people whom Avercamp loved to portray. Also, a huge influence on his creative formation had a painting by Frans Hals.
At the age of 15, Gerard leaves for Amsterdam. Here he begins to show interest in genre painting, tries to paint portraits. And the next year, in 1633, he went to the port city of Haarlem and became a student of the landscape painter and engraver Peter de Moulain. Two years later, he receives the title of master of painting and already has the right to autograph his work. In 1635 he joined the association of artists of the city of Haarlem - the Guild of St. Luke.
Then Gerard has a period of travel and travel. He goes to London to visit his uncle, the then famous carver, where he meets the famous Flemish portrait painter Anthony van Dyck.
Returning for a short time to his homeland in Zwoll, he again left for Italy, then to Spain. By the way, in Madrid he impressed with his works and even was honored to paint a portrait of King Philip IV of Spain. Unfortunately, the portrait itself has not been preserved to this day, but the king became a fan of Terborch's painting and collected a large collection of paintings by the artist.
Finally, for five years, Gerard settles in Amsterdam. He works a lot, especially in the genre theme, very skillfully and elegantly conveying the interiors and life of the population from the middle wealthy class.
As a portrait painter, Gerard Terborch became famous in 1648. This is due to his trip to the city of Munster in Germany, where peace talks were held with Spain, and Gerard, at the invitation of the Dutch ambassador, painted portraits of politicians present there. This is one of the famous canvases of Gerard Terborch, very rich and crowded, it depicts about 70 people.
Prior to his marriage, in 1654 in the city of Deventer, Terborch continued to work actively and hard, travel from city to city and their geography is vast - Amsterdam, The Hague, Haarlem, Kampen and others. After 40 years, he draws less and less genre scenes and is more interested in portraits.
Until his death, in December 1681, Gerard lives with his family in Deventer, but he is buried in his native Zwoll.
The artist traveled a lot, saw the art of European masters, but at the same time, he remained forever faithful to the Dutch school of painting, with a characteristic calm atmosphere of national life.
The work of Gerard Terborch attracts with the lack of pathos, and at the same time with the elegance of execution, the democratic choice of subjects - from early paintings of everyday life of simple and prosperous Dutch to the splendid splendor of aristocrats, diplomats and kings.
He perfectly turns out human figures, a movement of hands, an elegantly exposed leg, and coupled with some psychological, ambiguity, and unfinishedness of each plot, it turns out a masterpiece of a brilliant artist, near whom there is always a grateful spectator.
His work became an example for many generations of painters, especially his influence on Jan Vermeer, the most talented follower of Terborch.