- C. Boschma
Dutch painter and government official. He married in 1634 and served as burgomaster of Franeker from 1637 to 1639 and of Leeuwarden in 1645. His primary occupation, however, was painting, and in 1648 he paid for the purchase of a house in Leeuwarden with some of his own pictures. He was buried in Leeuwarden.
Mancadan, who possibly started his career as a painter in middle age, had a highly individual style. He painted two types of landscapes: Italianate and native Dutch. Among the first group are a number of Arcadian subjects, including a scene from P. C. Hooft’s play, Granida and Daifilo (Groningen, Groninger Mus.). Other scenes of shepherds with their flocks near ruins may also have been intended as illustrations to pastoral literature. He was apparently inspired by the early landscapes of Salvator Rosa, although there is no evidence that he ever travelled to Italy. The second group of landscapes depicts the local Frisian countryside: these include a Landscape with Farms in Friesland (Leeuwarden, Fries Mus.); a woodland view; and a seascape that may have been painted on the Zuyder Zee coast of Friesland. Mancadan’s large painting of Peat-cutting at Wildervank near Groningen (Groningen, Groninger Mus.), a subject rarely depicted by his contemporaries, occupies a special place within his oeuvre, since he owned a part share in a peat-bog in south-eastern Friesland. His compositions are typified by a scheme of diagonals, with a massive group of mountains or a ruin on one side, flanked by a distant view, with a few figures or animals acting as a foil. The mountainous landscapes, with or without ruins, usually include goats and sheep or cows. His figures can always be recognized by their strangely crooked posture. His subdued palette of browns and greens for the landscapes and ruins is enlivened only by the occasional use of red in the shepherds’ clothing. Only a few of the paintings are fully signed; others are monogrammed, but most are unsigned.
The inventory of Mancadan’s estate (part of the van Harinxma thoe Slooten family archive; Leeuwarden, Rijksarchf Friesland) includes over 100 paintings and more than 300 drawings. Many of these, depicting landscapes with animals, were probably by him. The only named artists in the inventory are his Frisian contemporaries Margaretha de Heer (fl 1650) and Guilliaum de Heer (d 1681). He also possessed a considerable collection of books on historical and theological subjects, including Classical texts as well as later Latin and Italian books and contemporary sources on the new Dutch Republic.
- A. Heppner: ‘J. S. Mancadan: Neue Funde, sein Leben und sein Werk betreffend’, Oud-Holland, 51 (1934), pp. 210–17
- C. Boschma: ‘Nieuwe gegevens omtrent J. S. Mancadan’, Oud-Holland, 81 (1966), pp. 84–106