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Gerard Hordijk (1899 - 1958)

Gerard Hordijk

Horses in the circus

Signed lower right
Watercolour and gouache on paper
26,5 x 37 cm.

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Gerard Hordijk


Gerard Hordijk

(1899 - 1958)

Gerard Hordijk was born in the Hague in 1899. He studied structural engineering in Delft as well as artistic painting at the Royal Academy in The Hague. However, it was an artistic career that he eventually chose to pursue. In the year 1927 he left for Paris, where he had contact with many other Dutch artists, including Piet Mondriaan. The city inspired Hordijk with its gentility, as depicted by the French painter Raoul Dufy. Dufy's paintings of the French parks and race courses with their fashionable visitors served as a model for Hordijk.

In 1935, Hordijk left for America for a short period. During his stay he produced many sketches at the ballet school of the famous choreographer George Balanchine. Here, Hordijk developed his unique style - somewhat loose and sketchy - which he was to continue to use until the end of his life.   

He settled in Amsterdam for the next five years, but continued to travel frequently between Paris and the south of France. In this period he also received a request for a number of mural paintings for various cultural buildings in Amsterdam. Between 1940 and 1948 he lived in New York, where his friendship with Piet Mondriaan intensified.

During the war, Hordijk was active in America on behalf of Dutch artists. His efforts were highly appreciated and led to many enduring friendships. Hordijk returned to Amsterdam in 1948 and during the last ten years of his life he produced many works on request, such as designs for stage clothing and scenes, but also some free work. He died a well known, well loved and versatile artist.