Coorte, Adriaen
Dutch, active c. 1683 - 1707
Coorte, Adrian


Almost nothing is known about the life and artistic training of the still-life painter Adriaen Coorte. The dates of his birth and death are unknown, but he was active in the period between 1683 and 1707.[1] The only document that refers to the artist during his lifetime comes from Middelburg’s Saint Luke’s Guild. In 1695–1696 Coorte was fined one Flemish pound for selling paintings as an unregistered master.[2] He must not have been well known within the guild, as his last name is misspelled and his first name is omitted entirely from the document. Judging from the guild document, and based on the fact that many of Coorte’s paintings appeared in sale catalogues and inventories in Middleburg in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, it seems probable that he lived in or near this city. Coorte’s paintings, which number about one hundred, consist primarily of small-scale still lifes depicting fruit, vegetables, flowers, shells, wild game, and vanitas subjects on a ledge or in a niche, arranged against a dark background. Coorte’s name was virtually forgotten until the 1950s, when his artistic qualities were recognized by the Dutch art historian Lawrence Bol.[3]

[1] Coorte’s earliest dated painting is from 1683; his latest dated painting is from 1707. Based on the date of his earliest painting, it may be assumed that the artist was born between 1660 and 1665. See Quentin Buvelot, The Still Lifes of Adriaen Coorte (Active c. 1683–1707): With Oeuvre Catalogue (The Hague, 2008), 18.

[2] Abraham Bredius, “De Gildeboeken van St. Lucas te Middelburg,” in Fr. D. O. Obreen, Archief voor Nederlandsche kunstgeschiedenis, 7 vols. (Rotterdam, 1884–1887), 6:229.

[3] Laurens J. Bol, “Adriaen Coorte, stillevenschilder,” Nederlands Kunsthistorisch Jaarboek 4 (1952–1953): 193–232; Dordrechts Museum and Laurens J. Bol, Adriaen Coorte: Stillevenschilder Dordrechts Museum, 2 Augustus–28 September 1958 (Dordrecht, 1958).


Bredius, Abraham. "De Gildeboeken van St. Lucas te Middelburg." In Archief voor Nederlandsche Kunstgeschiedenis. 7 vols. Edited by Frederik D.O. Obreen. Rotterdam, 1877-1890: 6(1884):229.
Bol, Laurens J. "Adriaen S. Coorte: Stillevenschilder." Nederlands Kunsthistorisch Jaarboek 4 (1952-1953): 193-232.
Bol, Laurens J. Adriaen Coorte, Stillevenschilder. Exh. cat. Dordrechts Museum, Dordrecht, 1958.
Adrian Coorte: Stillevenschilder. Exh. cat. Dordrechts Museum, 1958.
Bol, L.J. Holländische Maler des 17. Jahrhunderts neben den grossen Meistern. Landscaft und Stilleben. Brunswick, 1969: 359-364.
Müllenmeister, K.J. "Adrian Coorte." Die Weltkunst xlv (1975): 1603.
Bol, Laurens J. Adriaen Coorte: a unique late seventeenth century Dutch still-life painter. Assen, 1977.
Bol, L.J. Adriaen Coorte: A Unique Late 17th-century Dutch Still-Life Painter. Assen, 1977.
Schneider, N. Stilleben: Realität und Symbolik der Dinge. Cologne, 1989.
Wheelock, Arthur K., Jr. Small Wonders: Dutch still lifes by Adriaen Coorte. Exh. brochure, National Gallery of Art. Washington, 2003.
Buvelot, Quentin. The Still Lifes of Adriaen Coorte (active c.1683-1707): with oeuvre catalogue. Exh. cat. Royal Picture Gallery Mauritshuis, The Hague. Zwolle, 2008.