Wallerant Vaillant (1623-77) is one of the Dutch Golden Age artists. He was one of the first artists to use the mezzotint technique in engraving, which he is credited with helping to develop. He was born in Lille. He was the oldest of five brothers. They all became recognized artists. He is believed to have studied under Erasmus Quellinus in Antwerp. Vaillant is known to have been established as a portraitist in Antwerp (mid-1650s). He was the tutor of Prince Rupert of the Rhine. The Prince would go on to become a leading royalist commander in the English Civil War. He experimented with engraving while tutoring Prince Rupert. One source describes Vaillant as a specialist in ad vivum portraits in coloured pastels. He also painted in oils. He traveled extensively and worked in Amsterdam, Frankfurt, Paris and possibly England. He is chiefly known as a portraitist, including some excelent works depicting children. One well known work is 'Boy with a Falcon'. The boy is not identified, but the falson suggests that he was from an aristocratic family. He also worked as an engraver. The development of the mezzotint technique yielded better reproduction of shading. He is better known for this work than his portraits, but some are very good. Vaillant finally settled in Amsterdam and became the court painter of John William Friso, Prince of Orange (1664). He died in Amsterdam. Vaillant died in Amsterdam.
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