Sight from the Five Senses
Cornelis Dusart (Dutch, 1660-1704)
DimensionsPlate : 9 1/2 x 7 1/4 in. (24.13 x 18.41 cm)
Credit LineHope College Collection
LabelCornelis Dusart began his career as a painter in the Dutch city of Haarlem, but expanded his artistic repertoire to include printmaking after he moved to Amsterdam in the 1680s. It is not known exactly where or when Dusart learned the mezzotint process, but he seems to have begun making mezzotints commercially around 1685. Whereas many mezzotint artists copied designs from existing paintings and prints, Dusart often created mezzotints featuring his own original designs. This image of a group of men peering lasciviously at a woman holding a candle comes from a suite of original mezzotint designs created by Dusart to illustrate the five senses. The tonal range produced by the light of the candle gives Dusart an opportunity to demonstrate his mastery of the mezzotint process, and highlights the technique’s ability to convey painterly effects.