Flemish painter and draughtsman, nephew of Josse de Momper II.
In 1629 he became a master in the Antwerp Guild of St Luke. He left Antwerp for the northern Netherlands, working initially at The Hague; by 1647 he was in Haarlem and the following year Amsterdam, where he married in 1649. In 1650 Frans returned to Antwerp, where he painted numerous monochrome landscapes in the manner of Jan van Goyen.
Paintings such as the Valley with Mountains (c. 1640-50; Philadelphia, Museum of Art) prefigure the imaginative landscapes of Hercules Seghers. The impression of vast panoramic spaces in Frans s work is adopted from his uncle s art.
Frans executed a number of variations on the theme of a river landscape with boats and village (e.g. pen-and-ink drawing, Edinburgh, National Gallery). In the late painting Landscape with a Chteau Encircled by Doves (Bordeaux, Muse des Beaux-Arts), the low horizon and light-filled sky are adopted from the new Dutch school of tonal landscape painting, while the delicacy of the figures, feathery trees and buildings are features of the Italo-Flemish tradition exemplified by his uncle. Similar qualities of refinement and luminosity characterize the Winter Landscape (c. 1650; Prague, National Gallery), a favourite theme. The stylistic blend in these paintings builds on the success of Paul Bril
and Jan Breughel the Elder, both active in Italy at the end of the 16th century and in the first quarter of the 17th.
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