Frans Post

Dates1612 - 1680
BornHaarlem, The Netherlands
DiedHaarlem, The Netherlands

One of the first European-trained artists to paint in the Americas, Frans Post accompanied the newly appointed Dutch governor on an expedition to the colony of Brazil from 1637 to 1644. Probably taught by his painter father, who was the brother of architect Pieter Post, Frans used his early training to paint Brazilian landscapes, plants, animals, and natives. Together with Albert Eckhout and other artists and scientists, he recorded various aspects of Brazilian life, capturing the local atmosphere and topography.

Post's experiences in South America remained a fundamental influence; for the rest of his career, he produced imaginary Brazilian landscapes. More than thirty paintings by the artist were presented to Louis XIV of France in 1679 and were later used by the Gobelins Tapestry Manufactory as the basis for the popular tapestry series, "Les anciennes Indes" (The Ancient Indies). Towards the end of his life, Post's memories of Brazil began to fade, and his works became increasing decorative.