Jan Toorop  

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Jean Theodoor "Jan" Toorop (December 20, 1858, Purworedjo, JavaMarch 3, 1928, The Hague) was a Dutch painter whose works straddle the space between the Symbolist painters and Art Nouveau.

Born in Java, he moved with his family to the Netherlands in 1872, and he studied in Delft and Amsterdam. In 1880 he became a student at the State Academy in Amsterdam. From 1882 to 1886 he lived in Brussels, where he joined Les Vingts, a group of artists centred around James Ensor. Toorop worked in various different styles during these years, such as Realism, Impressionism and Post-Impressionism.

After his marriage to an English woman, Annie Hall, in 1886, Toorop alternated his time between The Hague, England and Brussels, and after 1890 also the Dutch seaside town of Katwijk aan Zee. During this period he developed his own unique Symbolist style, with dynamic, unpredictable lines based on Javanese motifs, highly stylised willowy figures, and curvilinear designs.

Thereafter he turned to Art Nouveau styles, in which a similar play of lines is used solely for decorative purposes, without any symbolic meaning. In 1905 he converted to Catholicism and began producing religious works. He also created book illustrations, posters, and stained glass designs.

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