Jacob Huijbrecht Hollestelle
19.11.1858 (Middelburg, The Netherlands) - 01.06.1920 (Dordrecht, The Netherlands)
Jacob Huijbrecht Hollestelle was born on November 19th, 1858 in the Dutch city of Middelburg. He was the eldest of four children and came from a typical "Zeeland" family, the province where Middelburg is located. The surname "Hollestelle" is also typical of Zeeland; both the origin of the surname and the meaning originated here. A "holle stelle" was originally a sort of well for the sheep. In earlier days these wells were often to be found in the Zeeland landscape.
Hollestelle received his artistic training at the Academy of Fine Arts in The Hague (1880-1883) and the Polytechnic School in Delft. After Hollestelle had lived and worked alternately in Middelburg and The Hague, he settled in Dordrecht in 1884 at the age of 25. He started to work as a drawing teacher at the "Burgeravondschool." On December 27th, 1889 he married Maria Johanna Pieternella Tuite. They had one son and one daughter. The classes at the Burgeravondschool were held in the evening, so Hollestelle could paint during the day. He drew much inspiration from nature and his surroundings, so he always took his sketchbook with him. He painted various places in the city, including the famous "Groothoofd" in Dordrecht, which is depicted by many other artists. Hollestelle also went back to his beloved hometown in Zeeland regularly. He travelled to the province and painted places like Domburg, Middelburg, and Veere. Furthermore Hollestelle travelled frequently to the rocky coast of Normandy and Bretagne in France, where he painted extraordinary beaches and seascapes. Hollestelle was inspired by the painters of The Hague School, yet he clearly took an independent position in the art world of that time. He was already very skilled at painting at an early age and had the power to easily depict a landscape or cityscape with his fine, broad brushwork.
Jacob Hollestelle died on June 1st, 1920 in Dordrecht, and left us an incredible amount of paintings, drawings and watercolours. One can admire his work in a beautiful collection in the Zeeuws Museum in Middelburg.
Pieter A. Scheen, Lexicon Nederlandse Beeldende Kunstenaars 1750-1880, Den Haag 1981, p. 223