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Robert Graafland (1875, Maastricht – 1940, Heerlen) was a Dutch painter. His father was a commission merchant and a banker, and a heraldist, who published two books on blazonry. In 1890, the family moved from Maastricht to Amsterdam, where Robert attended the Rijks Normaalschool voor Teekenonderwijzers (State College for Drawing Teachers), and the Quellinusschool, a school for applied art. In... Read moreRobert Graafland (1875, Maastricht – 1940, Heerlen) was a Dutch painter. His father was a commission merchant and a banker, and a heraldist, who published two books on blazonry. In 1890, the family moved from Maastricht to Amsterdam, where Robert attended the Rijks Normaalschool voor Teekenonderwijzers (State College for Drawing Teachers), and the Quellinusschool, a school for applied art. In 1895, he enrolled in the Rijksacademie voor Beeldende Kunsten (State Academy of Fine Arts) in Amsterdam.

There he studied under Augustus Allebé and Carel Drake. Afterwards, Graafland returned to Maastricht in 1898 as an art teacher at the Stadsteekeninstituut (City Institute for Drawing). In 1901, Graafland founded the Zondagsschildersschool (‘Sunday Painters School’). In 1902, he married Maria Duquesne. The couple travelled across Italy. In 1905, Graafland left Maastricht for the United States in order to meet American artists. In 1906, he returned from America, and the family - Robert, Maria and their children - lived in various cities in Belgium.

Finally in 1911, they settled at St. Pieter near Maastricht, where their house became a meeting place for artists from Maastricht. Graafland painted in a Romantic, Impressionist style. His works displayed the beauty of life. In 1910, he co-founded the Limburgse Kunstkring (Limburg Art Society). In 1916, he was awarded the golden medal by Queen Wilhelmina for his paintings Levensvreugde (Joy of life) and Meisjes in de zon (Girls in the Sun). At the end of World War I Graafland was depressed. In 1933, he was admitted to a clinic in Apeldoorn and afterwards in Vught. In the last period of his life, he painted very little, mainly portraits.

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