Aelbert Jacobsz Cuyp (October 20, 1620 - November 15, 1691) was one of the leading Dutch landscape painters of the 17th century. The most famous of a family of painters, the pupil of his father Jacob Gerritsz. Cuyp (1594–1651/52), he is especially known for his views of the Dutch countryside in early morning or late afternoon.
Aelbert Cuyp was born in Dordrecht on October 20, 1620, and also died there on November 15, 1691. Known as the Dutch version of Claude Lorrain, this landscape artist went on to inherit a considerable fortune. His family were all artists, with his uncle and grandfather being glass stainers. Jacob Gerritsz Cuyp, his father, was a portraitist.
Cuyp's drawings reveal him to be a draftsman of superior quality. Light-drenched washes of golden brown ink depict a distant view of the city of Dordrecht or Utrecht. A Cuyp drawing may look like he intended it to be, a finished work of art; but it was most likely taken back to the studio and used as a reference for his paintings. Often the same section of a sketch can be found in several different pictures.
Cuyp signed many of his works but rarely dated them, so that a chronology of his career has not been satisfactorily reassembled. A phenomenal number of paintings are ascribed to him, some of which are likely to be by other masters of the golden landscape, such as Abraham Calraet (1642–1722), whose initials A.C. may be mistaken for Cuyp's.
However, not everyone appreciates his work and River Landscape (1660), despite being widely regarded as amongst his best work, has been described as having "chocolate box blandness".