Henri van de Waal'''Henri (''Hans'') van de Waal''' (3 March 1910 – 7 May 1972) was a Dutch writer and art historian known for developing Iconclass.
Van de Waal was born in Rotterdam. In 1934 he finished his education as an art historian in Leiden with a monography on Jan van Goyen. He accepted a position at the National Print Cabinet in The Hague, where he began work on a German concept of image-based historical research, which due to the special circumstances of the interbellum period was drastically reduced. He eventually finished his PhD thesis 12 July 1940, ''cum laude'', on the patriotic subject of ''Zeventiende eeuwsche uitbeeldingen van den Bataafschen Opstand'' (17th-century images of the Batavian Revolt). Four months later he was dismissed as part of the actions by the German occupational forces against Jews.
Soon after being released from captivity in Westerbork in 1945, he took up work as an assistant professor in Leiden, but was appointed a full professorship in art history the same December. In 1946 he presented his ideas about mapping the iconography of art history with "beeld-leer", an image-based concept of recording form, function and content with one code. He remained professor and director of the print cabinet until his death resulting from kidney damage contracted during a case of scarlet fever he had while in Westerbork.
Van de Waal was elected a member of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1957.
His "beeld-leer" resulted in the D.I.A.L. (Decimal Index of the Art of the Low Countries) based on the Dewey Decimal System, and later called Iconclass. Henri van de Waal died in Leiden. Provided by Wikipedia