JAKOB VAN DOMSELAER
Jakob van Domselaer
The composer Jakob van Domselaer turned toward modernism around 1915 in an entirely original way. While his friend Piet Mondriaan was introducing abstract geometry to painting, Van Domselaer was combining elements from the music of J.S. Bach with atonal techniques. He was largely ignored during his lifetime, and even today ...
Biography Jakob van Domselaer
The composer Jakob van Domselaer turned toward modernism around 1915 in an entirely original way. While his friend Piet Mondriaan was introducing abstract geometry to painting, Van Domselaer was combining elements from the music of J.S. Bach with atonal techniques. He was largely ignored during his lifetime, and even today he has only a small circle of admirers.
1890 - 1910
Jakob van Domselaer is born on April 15 in the conservative, religious village of Nijkerk. His father is a tradesman. He takes lessons from the organist Johan Enderlé. Later, he studies the organ in Utrecht with Willem Petri and composition with Johan Wagenaar.
On Wagenaar’s advice, Van Domselaer takes lessons in Berlin from the Scottish pianist Frederic Lamond. The concerts of the pianist-composer Ferrucio Busoni leave a deep impression on him.
Van Domselaer goes to Paris, where he comes into contact with the painter Piet Mondriaan.
1913 - 1915
Back in the Netherlands, Jakob van Domselaer prepares his debut recital, which he performs in April 1914 in London. He then takes up residence in Laren, where he maintains contact with the theosophical publicist Mathieu Schoenmaekers, who at that time exerts great influence on Mondriaan and other artists.
1916 - 1920
With his wife, Maaike Middelkoop, Van Domselaer moves to Amsterdam. He joins the artists society De Moderne Kunstkring (later, De Nieuwe Kring). For the Kunstkring’s 'Journaal', he writes several articles explaining his aesthetics. In 'Proeven van Stijlkunst' [Experiments in the Art of Style, 1916], for piano, he combines the Romantic organ sonority of Busoni’s Bach transcriptions – which he performs in his recitals – with rather eccentric, radical and to a degree atonal structural principles. After, he feels for some time that he has reached a dead end. His later work is more in line with the late Romantic tradition of Anton Bruckner and Gustav Mahler.
1920 - 1960
The family moves to Bergen in North Holland province. Though Jakob van Domselaer often performs new work in the following years, it generates little response and he finds himself increasingly isolated. He composes two piano concertos (he performs the first with the Utrecht Municipal Orchestra in 1929) and a symphony, as well as sonatas, suites and variations for the piano. His few students include Nico Schuyt and Simeon ten Holt.
Van Domselaer dies in Bergen on January 5.
His wife Maaike Middelkoop publishes the 'Overzicht over leven en werken van Jakob van Domselaer' [Survey of the Life and Work of Jakob van Domselaer].
Discography Jakob van Domselaer
|Act||Jakob van Domselaer|
|Type and year||CD, 1994|
|Label||do records, 001|
In the discography you will find all recordings that have been released listed chronologically. We restrict ourselves to the title, the type of audio, year of publication or recording, label, list of guest musicians, plus any comments on the issue.
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