Otto Marseus van Schrieck

Otto Marseus van Schrieck (ca. 1619, Nijmegen buried June 22, 1678, Amsterdam) was a painter in the Dutch Golden Age.

Marseus van Schrieck spent the years 1648-165in Rome and Florence with the painters Matthias Withoos and Willem van Aelst, after which he settled in Amsterdam. He is best known for his paintings of forest flora and fauna. In Arnold Houbraken's biography of him, he mentions that he joined the Bentvueghels in Rome and was called the snuffelaer, or 'sniffer', because he was always sniffing strange lizards and snakes. He quotes his wife, who apparently survived him by two husbands and was still alive when he wrote the book. He wrote that she said that Otto kept snakes and lizards in a shed at the back of his house, and also on a piece of land outside the city that was walled in for this purpose. Works

Many of his paintings are dark studies of plants, often with lizards at the base and insects on the leaves and branches. According to the RKD, his followers were Willem van Aelst, Anthonie van Borssom, Elias van den Broeck (1649-1708), J Falk, Carl Wilhelm de Hamilton, Trajan Hughes, Nicolaes Lachtropius (1656-1700), Jacob Marrel, Abraham Mignon, Rachel Ruysch, Christiaen Striep, Isac Vromans, Matthias Withoos, and Pieter Withoos. A notable omission in this list is the daughter and sister of the last two mentioned, Alida Withoos, who collaborated with him on creating paintings of the garden of Vijverhof for Agnes Block's collection of garden albums.

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