South Netherlandish family of painters and draughtsmen. They moved to Antwerp from Cleve in the late 15th century or the early 16th. Hendrik van Cleve I was registered as a master in the Antwerp Guild of St Luke in 1489–90 and in 1519–20 took Jan Sanders van Hemessen as his pupil. Any kinship between Hendrik I and Willem van Cleve I (fl 1518–43), who became a master in 1518, is uncertain. Van Mander described a Hendrik van Cleve as the patriarch of the family and added that he joined the guild in 1533 and later collaborated with Frans Floris and his own brother Marten; but he clearly confused Hendrik II (who joined the Guild of St Luke in 1534) with (1) Hendrik van Cleve III, one of the three sons of Willem I, all of whom joined the Guild in 1551–2, probably after the death of their father, in whose studio they had been working. Hendrik III and (2) Marten van Cleve I both joined Floris's workshop. The third brother, Willem the younger (1530/35–before 1560), left no children, but the sons of Hendrik III—Gillis van Cleve I, Hans van Cleve (fl 1606) and probably Hendrik IV (before 1598–1646)—and those of Marten the elder—Gillis van Cleve II (b Antwerp, c. 1557; d Paris, 1597), Marten van Cleve II (before 1560–after 1604), Joris van Cleve (fl late 16th century) and Nicolaas van Cleve (b Antwerp, before 1560; d Antwerp, 20 Aug 1619)—were active as painters in Antwerp, Ghent and Paris towards the end of the 16th century and the beginning of the 17th. However, only works by (1) Hendrik van Cleve III and (2) Marten van Cleve I have been identified.(1) Hendrik van Cleve III (b Antwerp, c. 1525; d Antwerp, between Jan 1590 and 1595). He was the son and pupil of Willem van Cleve I. After his apprenticeship, he went to Italy, where he painted a signed and dated View of Rome (1550; priv. col.) and made a number of pen-and-ink drawings with views of Rome and Tivoli (e.g. Berlin, Kupferstichkab; Paris, Louvre; and Vienna, Albertina). Some of the drawings later served as models for the etched series Regionum, rurium, fundorumque, varii atque amoeni prospectus, published by Philip Galle in 1587, and were also copied by other painters—one such copy (1589; Brussels, Mus. A. Anc.) shows the Belvedere Gardens with St Peter's still under construction, as it would have appeared c. 1550.
From The Grove Encyclopedia of Northern Renaissance Art in Oxford Reference.
Subjects: Renaissance Art.