The best books on The Dutch Golden Age, recommended by Maarten Prak

The Netherlands witnessed a flourishing in the late 16th and first half of the 17th century, leading the world in technology, commerce and the arts, particularly painting. Historian Maarten Prak recommends five books to help you understand why the Dutch Golden Age saw the invention of stock exchanges and why it produced Rembrandt, too.

The best books on Rembrandt, recommended by Onno Blom

Though he left more self-portraits to posterity than practically any Old Master, there remains an air of mystery around Rembrandt the man—even on the 350th anniversary of his death. Piecing together the very few personal letters and documents left behind, Onno Blom has now reconstructed Rembrandt’s formative years in Young Rembrandt. Here he guides us through five of the most authoritative—and imaginative—accounts of the artist.

The best books on The Dutch Masters, recommended by Adam Eaker

The past may be a foreign country, but the world portrayed in the art of the Dutch Masters is not so very far from our own, says Adam Eaker of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. For a society that struggles with materialism and consumption, there are a lot of lessons to be learnt from the 17th century Golden Age.