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 Wim Klever

Graat paints in a (not uncommon) grand metaphorical style the ( by his friends) acknowledged and even admired young and revolutionary talent and expresses his promising future.

Eric Schliesser

Wim, the Graat painting offers NO indication of a revolution (nor radicalism); if anything, the painting promises continuity or restoration with classical (Imperial) ideals. And that is just very odd for a Spinozist.

Lisa Shapiro

Slight push back. It is interesting that like Hobbes and Descartes, the Graat Spinoza is dressed in a white shirt and black over layer. Whatever that is supposed to signify. On the other hand, why are Descartes and Hobbes looking to the right and Spinoza (and van Schurman) looking to the left? What does that mean?

Mike Jacovides

I think that there's controversy both about whether the purported Hals painting is by Hals and about whether it's supposed to be Descartes. It doesn't look like Hals's style, as you note. This is the first chapter of Nadler's book on the painting: http://press.princeton.edu/chapters/s9926.pdf

Steve Nadler

Michael is correct: the Louvre portrait of Descartes is a copy of a Hals original which is much smaller and more like Hals' typical style.

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