Walter Gibson, born in Columbus, Ohio, USA, in 1932. Ph.D. from Harvard University, Cambridge. Andrew W. Mellon Professor of the Humanities at Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland.
Fellow (1 September 1995 – 30 June 1996)
My NIAS project originally entailed the completion of a book on the origins and development on the rustic landscape from Pieter Bruegel the Elder to Jacob van Ruisdael. If this ambitious goal was not achieved, it was largely because of the wealth of new material I encountered during my research in Holland. However, thanks to the facilities offered by NIAS, especially its superb interlibrary service, I was able to finish a substantial second draft, and plan to complete the final revisions in the near future.
The Dutch rustic landscape was also the subject of a lecture that I gave at several institutions, including the University of Groningen, Williams College, and the National Gallery, London. An abbreviated version of this lecture will be published in the journal Akt, sponsored by the University of Groningen.
In May, I participated in the organisation with Boudewijn Bakker and another colleague, of a workshop ‘Netherlandish Landscape 16th-17th Centuries’, conducted at NIAS. On this occasion, I gave a short presentation, ‘Narrative Elements in Dutch Painted Landscapes’.
An unexpected bonus of this NIAS year has been the location of NIAS itself on the edge of the dunes. This gave me the unique opportunity to experience in its various seasonal aspects the kind of scenery so often depicted by the Dutch landscapists of the Golden Age.