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Jan Willem Pieneman was born on November 4, 1779 in Abcoude in the Netherlands. He worked as a salesman while taking courses at the Amsterdam Drawing Academy. In 1805 he was appointed as a drawing instructor at the artillery and engineering training center in Amersfoort. He was best known for his paintings of events from the history of the United Kingdom of the Netherlands.
He became famous for a painting he made at Villa Welgelegen, which portrayed the heroic deeds of the Prince of Orange at the Battle of Quatre Bras. He later made a painting of the Battle of Waterloo. The Duke of Wellington fell in love with this painting and he repeatedly brought Jan to England to paint portraits.
Jan Willem Pieneman played an important role as mentor and teacher of a group of young artists, including Jozef Israëls.Other students were: Christina Alida Bleedstein, Jacob Bruggink, Gijsbertus Craeyvanger, Reinier Craeyvanger, Johannes Hinderikus Egenberger, Petrus Francis-cus Greive, Lambertus Johannes Hansen, Louis Meijer, his son Nicolaas Pieneman, Jan Jacob Spohler and Willem Steelink.
In 1820 he was appointed first director of the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Amsterdam, a position he held until his death.He was also assistant director at the Royal Cabinet (which later became the Mauritshuis) and was director of the Rijksmuseum, which was then housed in the Trippenhuis.
Jan Willem Pieneman died on April 8, 1853 in Amsterdam.
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Jan Willem Pieneman