Gerard Hoet trained with his father and with a pupil of Cornelis van Poelenburgh. Van Poelenburgh was an Italianate landscape painter who was one of the first Dutch painters to incorporate into his paintings the romantic ruins and fragments of antique statuary he had seen in Italy.
In 1672 Hoet moved to The Hague, then spent a year in Paris, returning to the Netherlands via Brussels. Settling in Utrecht, he founded a drawing academy in 1697. Seventeen years later he returned to The Hague, where he spent the rest of his life. He depicted mainly religious, mythological, or classical subjects set in landscapes, usually on a small scale. Less frequently, he painted these subjects in larger formats with multiple figures and in an elegant, classicizing style. Hoet also painted portraits and genre pieces, along with designing illustrations for bibles. His book on drawing was published in 1712.