Petrus Paulus Maria de Haan

Alkmaar  1947


Rijksacademie van Beeldende Kunsten Amsterdam   1969 - 1975







The paintings of Peter de Haan are buzzing with silence rather than hearing his voice, as crowded as they are with wondrous creatures, sometimes recognizable from stories or films, sometimes strangeley composed, sometimes very familiar. 

Will the narrator be seen? He seems to be crawling away in one of the players, maybe in the Pierrot? With these players he orchestrates a dreamland in which, even if you would to scream, no sound sticks. Those dreams are always composed of a mixture  of tenderness and cruelty. When one enters into his world, you enter her on stocking feet -   then you are with one leg in paradise and with the other in purgatory.

Wendelien Schönfeld  (on the occasion of the exposition in Rosa Spierhuis Laren  2007)


Peter de Haan is primarily a painter of visible thoughts, more of the dream than of reality. In an always alienating atmosphere he expresses an apparent isolation from man. As in a strange arrangement people look past each other, lost in their own thoughts. Mysterious stories emerge from his imaginative universe, often centered on the child to place the adult world in the perspective of innocence and hope. Each time a double figure has been seen from the back or the confrotation between man and animal in the hypothermic bluish light. Clownish figures with identical faces are placed in a dream landscape, surrounded by birds, frogs and fish. The everyday gets a poetic order and sheds a completely different light on normal perception. Figures and objects, unrelated, are brought together and its up to the vieuwer to sort out or simply experience the mysteries of poetry.

Annefie van Itterson (Het oude Raadhuis Aalsmeer  2009)


               About Pavilion

At the same time that I received the lectures from Ernst van de Wetering I first saw a painting by Peter de Haan. Perhaps it was because of the remarks of Van de Wetering about Koninck that I was struck by the way in which this contemporary painter from Alkmaar also places light and dark parties as sets in front and behind each other. The painting shows a fantasy construction on the beach: a tower built from planks and other washed up stuff that is full of bathers. The tower rattles on all sides, in reality it would collapse immediatley, but the painting is clearly very carefully constructed. Everywhere light and shadow are in balance. Just take that man in the circel on the left. I have no idea what that circel is and how it is attached to the rest of the structure, but how that white leg contrasts niceley with the dark wood or plastic, and with the arm in the shadow behind it, which together with the head and top of the circel turns dark again in the white of the sky.

Peter de Haan paints a softer light than Koninck and Weissenbruch. His contrasts are less sharp. And he does not use them to enhance the vastness of the landscape. In his painting there are really only two plans:  the tower and the rest of the world. 

But within that tower, so on the square meter space is indeed suggested because bodyparts or pieces of wood may or may not catch sunlight.

Gijsbert van der Wal  (from  the newspaper N.R.C.  and his book "Wijd open ogen",  pieces about art and pleasure of looking. 2012)