Jozef Israels (1824-1911)

The fisherman

Paris, about 1883

Etching on wove paper, probably Japanese paper, with blind stamp

498 x 391 mm

Almost identical to an oil painting of about 1883 entitled ‘The Fisherman’ or ‘The Struggle for Existence’, this etching portrays a man with his sleeves and trouser legs rolled up for fishing salmon. The work focuses on the fisherman rather than the landscape he inhabits. As such, it is a study of humanity and the struggle to survive rather than a topographical view of a river. Israels trained and worked in Paris and his works depict scenes of rural Dutch communities with the truth and objectivity of French Realist artists like Millet and Courbet.

Purchased 2001 (2001.9)