Willem was the third in a family of five children. His two brothers Jacob and Matthijs preceded him as painters. He went to the ‘Academy of Art’.
Maris received advice from the cattle painter Pieter Stortenbeker, who gave him work to copy.
In 1862, Maris made his debut with Cows on the Heath, which may have been painted in Oosterbeek, which he visited for the first time that year. It was in Oosterbeek that he met Gerard Bilders and Anton Mauve.
Willem’s painting career progressed regularly and he maintained a steady production.
In 1880, he began to use broader strokes, combining this with impasto. In this period Breitner studied with him.
Willem died in 1910 in The Hague.
His work is part of the collection of ;
Stedelijk Museum -Amsterdam,
Haags Gemeente Museum, and many others all over the world.
Scheen, Pieter A., Lexicon Nederlandse Beeldende Kunstenaars 1750-1950,( Kunsthandel Pieter A.Scheen N.V. ‘s Gravenhage )
Benezit, Emmanuel. Dictionnaire des Peintres, Sculpteurs, Dessinateurs, et Graveurs. (Librairie Grund, Paris, 1976)
Thieme – Becker. Allgemeines Lexikon der Bildender Künstler (Veb. E.A. Seemann Verlag, Leipzig)