De Wind is Op! Lecture looks at climate, culture, and innovation in Dutch maritime painting

Sailors’ Series speaker - Chief Curator Dr. Christina Connett Brophy – August 1, 2019

NEW BEDFORD, Mass – Dr. Christina Connett Brophy will explore themes and artworks featured in the New Bedford Whaling Museum exhibition De Wind is Op! Climate, Culture and Innovation in Dutch Maritime Painting, during a lecture at the Museum on Thursday, August 1. The Whaling Museum stewards one of the most important collections of maritime Dutch and Flemish paintings and prints outside of the Netherlands.  Dr. Connett Brophy is The Douglas and Cynthia Crocker Endowed Chair for the Chief Curator at the Whaling Museum. This talk is part of the Sailors’ Series lectures for 2019 and is supported by Ruth and Hope Atkinson, with additional support provided by Babbitt Steam Specialty and Burr Brothers Boats. A reception begins at 6:00 pm, and the lecture starts at 6:30 pm. Tickets can be purchased for $15 for Whaling Museum members and $20 for non-members at or by calling 508-997-0046. The Whaling Museum is located at 18 Johnny Cake Hill in New Bedford, Massachusetts.

The Sailors’ Series lectures present a wide variety of experiences and adventures by individuals with lifelong commitments to sailing, boats, and the sea. During her De Wind is Op! lecture, Dr. Connett Brophy will explore some of the Whaling Museum’s exceptional Golden Age paintings through a fresh lens, demonstrating how the artworks illustrate that wind, climate, innovation, and the sea were drivers behind a uniquely Dutch identity.

Many of the works highlighted in the exhibition De Wind is Op! were produced at the height of the Dutch Golden Age during the 17th century, one of the most culturally and economically lucrative eras in Dutch history. A period of well-documented dramatic climate variations, now known as the Little Ice Age, coincided perfectly with the Golden Age. The Little Ice Age was marked by dramatic and sometimes devastating fluctuations in weather and ocean currents. The Dutch capacity to innovate, as well as their natural geographic position helped them adapt, whereas the Little Ice Age had dire consequences for other societies around the world. The Dutch became a dominant superpower in all things maritime and were a political entity without precedence. The art world followed, shifting from the religious to the secular, and towards celebrating national and mercantile achievements rather than royalty.

De Wind is Op! Climate, Culture and Innovation in Dutch Maritime Painting is on view at the New Bedford Whaling Museum until summer 2020.

Media and Images Contact
Gayle Hargreaves
Marketing Manager
New Bedford Whaling Museum
508-997-0046 Ext. 139

About the New Bedford Whaling Museum
The New Bedford Whaling Museum is the world's most comprehensive museum devoted to the global story of human interaction with whales through time, and the history and culture of the South Coast region. The cornerstone of New Bedford Whaling National Historical Park, the Museum is located at 18 Johnny Cake Hill in the heart of the city's historic downtown. Museum hours: January through March, Tuesday – Saturday 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. and Sunday 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.; April through December, daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. The Museum is open until 8 p.m. every second Thursday of the month. Closed on Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Day.  Admission is: Free for Museum members and children aged three and under; adults $17, seniors (65+) $15, students (19+) $10, child and youth $7. For more information, visit


Caption: The PDP Monogrammist, Ships and Whales in a Tempest. Oil on wooden panel, c. 1595. Fully conserved in 2017 with support from the Rose Lamb Gifford Fund and the Uriel Conservation fund.