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Crispijn de Passe

Biographies
Crispijn de Passe

*  1564 Arnemuiden
† 1637 Utrecht


Crispijn de Passe was born in 1564 in Zeeland in the Netherlands. He received his education in Antwerp, the northern center of printing and graphics in the 16th century, and began his professional career there. In 1584/1585, de Passe became a member of the Guild of St. Luke, the guild of artists and painters, and worked as an engraver for various publishing houses. Crispijn de Passe had to leave Antwerp with his family in 1588, because Catholic Spain had conquered Antwerp; he went into exile in Cologne. There he founded his own publishing house, which was exceedingly successful. Crispijn de Passe published his own drafts, which were engraved by himself or other members of his studio. The emphasis in the graphic works issued by de Passe was on portraits and genre graphics. When the Protestant Crispijn de Passe rejected conversion again, he and his family had to leave Cologne; this time he relocated his studio to Utrecht. There de Passe worked with Aernout van Buchell (Buchelius). He continued his successful work in Utrecht. His children, who all began working as artists in their father's studio, worked later on their own in Paris, London, and Copenhagen, increasing the international fame of the de Passe studio. Crispijn de Passe died in 1637. Because three of his four children died relatively early, only his eldest son was left to honor his father's heritage. Crispijn de Passe the Younger relocated to Amsterdam but was unable to acheive the success of his father's studio; he died relatively poor in 1670.