Witsen, Willem

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Witsen, Willem Gender: M
Willem Arnoldus Witsen
born on 13 August 1860 at 23:00 (= 11:00 PM )
Place Amsterdam, Netherlands, 52n22, 4e54
Timezone LMT m4e54 (is local mean time)
Data source
BC/BR in hand
Rodden Rating AA
Collector: Schepel
Astrology data s_su.18.gif s_leocol.18.gif 21°19' s_mo.18.gif s_cancol.18.gif 10°42 Asc.s_gemcol.18.gif 10°57'

Willem Witsen


Dutch impressionistic painter, etcher, photographer and writer.

He was the son of Jonas Jan Witsen (1819-1901) and Jacoba Elizabeth Bonekamp (1826-1873). The Witsen's were a rich family of "regenten", the rulers of the Dutch republic.

He studied at the Royal Academy of Visual Arts at Amsterdam. He painted in an impressionistic style, but he made also gloomy winter landscapes. Because of his dreary weather paintings his first exhibition (1895)was not a success.

As he was born rich, he could permit himself to travel around the world and invite writers, poets and painters to stay at his now monumental house in Amsterdam. He was a member of arts circles like Sint Lucas and Arti et Amicitiae. He belonged the group of Tachtigers, an artistic movement between 1880 and 1894 that was partly a reaction against the moralistic aspects of the Romantic movement, partly a revival of it. As they were individualistic and loved nature, but "l'art pour l'art was their credo. The painters George Hendrik Breitner, Isaac Israëls, Eduard Karsen and Jan Veth and the writers Lodewijk van Deyssel, Albert Verwey, Willem Kloos, Hein Boeken and Herman Gorter belonged to his friends.

Much of his and his second wife's correspondences are digitalized now and constitute part of the historic "Het geheugen van Nederland" project (The memory of the Netherlands)

He died on 13 April 13 1932 in Amsterdam, being 71 years old.


On 4 May 1893 he married Elisabeth van Vloten at Haarlem. The couple were divorced in the year 1902.

In 1907 he married the writer Augusta Maria Schorr (b. 1 January 1875- 13 April 1943).

Since January 1891 he lived in the former atelier of his friend George Breitner (1857-1923). After her death his widow Witsen Scorr donated the house to the state. Now a state museum, "Het Witsenhuis" (Oosterpark 82, Amsterdam) has a Verlaine room where Paul Verlaine stayed around 1892. Writers like Marga Minco lived here.

Link to Wikipidia biography


  • Relationship : Marriage 4 May 1893 in Haarlem (Elisabeth van Vloten)
    chart Placidus Equal_H.
  • Work : Published/ Exhibited/ Released 1895 in Haarlem (1st exhibition)

Source Notes

Schepel quotes Amsterdam Municipal Archive for 23h00 LMT on 13081860 in Sterrentijd 4 No. 40.


  • Vocation : Art : Art critic
  • Vocation : Art : Fine art artist (impressionist painter , etcher)
  • Vocation : Art : Photography