Albert van Ouwater
Albert van Ouwater (c. 1410/1415-1475) was one of the earliest artists of Early Netherlandish painting working in the Northern Netherlands, as opposed to Flanders in the South of the region.
 BiographyHe was probably born in Oudewater, and is mentioned by Karel van Mander (1604) as a reputable painter at the time in which he lived. According to Karel van Mander he was possibly a contemporary of Jan van Eyck and had been the teacher of Geertgen tot Sint Jans, though he was quick to qualify this statement with the eye-witness account of an old man named Albert Simonsz who had been a pupil of Jan Mostaert and claimed neither he nor Mostaert had ever even heard of this Albert van Ouwater or Geertgen tot Sint Jans. Van Mander highly commends an altarpiece by Van Ouwater in the principal church in Haarlem, the Grotekerk or Sint-Bavokerk, representing St. Peter and St. Paul, in which the figures are carefully and correctly designed, and richly coloured. Van Mander posits Van Ouwater as the founder of the Haarlem school of painting, making him the first major Dutch (as opposed to Flemish) artist. According to Van Mander, landscape painting was a particular specialty of this Dutch school, although none of Van Ouwater's surviving works exhibit this tendency. Van Ouwater seems to have been a contemporary of Dirk Bouts in mid-15th-century Haarlem, and Geertgen tot Sint Jans may have been his pupil.