Category: theory

illumanu: second half of the 15th century Low …

illumanu:

second half of the 15th century Low Countries

silverpoint sketch by Gerard David

Paris, Musée du Louvre

http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Gerard_David_-_Codex_Vallardi_2320.jpg

Gerard David (c. 1460 – 13 August 1523) was an Early Netherlandish painter and manuscript illuminator known for his brilliant use of color. Only a bare outline of his life survives, although some facts are known. He may have been the Meester gheraet van brugghe who became a master of the Antwerp guild in 1515. He was very successful in his lifetime and probably ran two workshops, in Antwerp and Bruges. Like many painters of his period, his reputation diminished in the 17th century until he was rediscovered in the 19th century.

David’s surviving work mainly consists of religious scenes. They are characterised by an atmospheric, timeless, and almost dream like serenity, achieved through soft, warm and subtle colourisation, and masterful handling of light and shadow. He is innovative in his recasting of traditional themes and in his approach to landscape, which was then only an emerging genre in northern European painting. His ability with landscape can be seen in the detailed foliage of his Triptych of the Baptism and the forest scene in the New York Nativity.

Although many of the art historians of the early 20th century, including Erwin Panofsky and Max Jakob Friedländer saw him as a painter who did little but distill the style of others and painted in an archaic and unimaginative style. However today most view him as a master colourist, and a painter who according to the Metropolitan Museum of Art, worked in a “progressive, even enterprising, mode, casting off his late medieval heritage and proceeding with a certain purity of vision in an age of transition.”

In his early work David followed Haarlem artists such as Dirk Bouts, Albert van Oudewater and Geertgen tot Sint Jans, though he had already given evidence of superior power as a colourist. To this early period belong the St John of the Richard von Kaufmann collection in Berlin and the Salting’s St Jerome. In Bruges came directly under the influence of Memling, the master whom he followed most closely. It was from him that David acquired a solemnity of treatment, greater realism in the rendering of human form, and an orderly arrangement of figures.

He visited Antwerp in 1515 and was impressed with the work of Quentin Matsys, who had introduced a greater vitality and intimacy in the conception of sacred themes.

Master of the Death of the Virgin (maybe also …

Master of the Death of the Virgin (maybe also known as Joos van Cleve) – Death of Mary – ca. 1513

Triptych with on it: Saints George and Nicasius, with the donors Nicasius and Georg Hackeney. The death of Mary. Saints Christina and Gudula, with the wives of the donors, Christina and Sybilla Hackeney.

The Death of the Virgin Mary is a common subject in Western Christian art, the equivalent of the Dormition of the Theotokos in Eastern Orthodox art. This depiction became less common as the doctrine of the Assumption gained support in the Roman Catholic Church from the Late Middle Ages onward. Although that doctrine avoids stating whether Mary was alive or dead when she was bodily taken up to Heaven, she is normally shown in art as alive. Nothing is said in the Bible about the end of Mary’s life, but a tradition dating back to at least the 5th century says the twelve Apostles were miraculously assembled from their far-flung missionary activity to be present at the death, and that is the scene normally depicted, with the apostles gathered round the bed.

A virtuoso engraving by Martin Schongauer of about 1470 shows the Virgin from the foot of a large bed with the apostles spread around the three sides, and this composition influences many later depictions. Earlier depictions usually follow the standard Byzantine image, with the Virgin lying on a bed or sarcophagus across the front of the picture space, with Christ usually standing above her on the far side, and the apostles and others gathered around. Often Christ holds a small figure that may look like a baby, representing Mary’s soul.

A prominent, and late, example of the subject is Death of the Virgin by Caravaggio (1606), the last major Catholic depiction. Other examples include Death of the Virgin by Andrea Mantegna and Death of the Virgin by Hugo van der Goes. All these show the gathering of the apostles around the deathbed, as does an etching by Rembrandt.

Three minor anonymous artists are known to art history as the Master of the Death of the Virgin.

A triptych (TRIP-tik; from the Greek adjective τρίπτυχον “triptukhon” (“three-fold”), from tri, i.e., “three” and ptysso, i.e., “to fold” or ptyx, i.e., “fold”) is a work of art (usually a panel painting) that is divided into three sections, or three carved panels that are hinged together and can be folded shut or displayed open. It is therefore a type of polyptych, the term for all multi-panel works. The middle panel is typically the largest and it is flanked by two smaller related works, although there are triptychs of equal-sized panels. The form can also be used for pendant jewelry.

Despite its connection to an art format, the term is sometimes used more generally to connote anything with three parts, particularly if they are integrated into a single unit.

The Master of the Death of the Virgin was an Early Netherlandish painter active between 1507 and 1537. He is believed to be responsible for a large group of paintings; two of these are altarpieces of the Death of the Virgin, one in Cologne and one in Munich, from which his name is derived. He is sometimes, but not universally, identified with Joos van Cleve. Nothing further appears to be known about him.

Joos van Cleve (also Joos van der Beke; c. 1485 – 1540/1541) was a painter active in Antwerp around 1511 to 1540. He is known for combining traditional Dutch painting techniques with influences of more contemporary Renaissance painting styles.

An active member and co-deacon of the Guild of Saint Luke of Antwerp, he is known mostly for his religious works and portraits of royalty. As a skilled technician, his art shows sensitivity to color and a unique solidarity of figures. He was one of the first to introduce broad landscapes in the backgrounds of his paintings, which would become a popular technique of sixteenth century northern Renaissance paintings.

He was the father of Cornelis van Cleve (1520-1567) who also became a painter. Cornelis became mentally ill during a residence in England and was therefore referred to as ‘Sotte Cleef’ (mad Cleef).

Master of the Mansi Magdalene – Salvator Mundi…

Master of the Mansi Magdalene – Salvator Mundi in a Landscape

Salvator Mundi, Latin for Saviour of the World, is a subject in iconography depicting Christ with his right hand raised in blessing and his left hand holding an orb (frequently surmounted by a cross), known as a globus cruciger. The latter symbolizes the Earth, and the whole composition has strong eschatological undertones.

The theme was made popular by Northern painters such as Jan van Eyck, Hans Memling, and Albrecht Dürer. There are also several versions of the theme attributed to Titian, notably the one in the Hermitage Museum.

One painting of the subject, simply titled Salvator Mundi, was attributed or reattributed to Leonardo da Vinci in 2011. This painting disappeared from 1763 until 1900, when it was acquired from Sir Charles Robinson. It was at the time thought to be a work by Leonardo’s follower, Bernardino Luini, and was purchased for the Doughty House in Richmond, London by Sir Francis Cook . By this time Christ’s face and hair had been extensively repainted. A photograph taken in 1912 records the work’s altered appearance. In 2017, this painting sold at auction for US$450,300,000, the highest price ever paid for a painting.

The Master of the Mansi Magdalen (c.1490 – 1530), was an Early Netherlandish painter.

In art history, a Notname, "necessity-name" or “contingency-name”) is an invented name given to an artist whose identity has been lost. The practice arose from the need to give such artists and their typically untitled, or generically titled works, an acceptable if unsatisfactory grouping, avoiding confusion when cataloging. The phrases provisional name, name of convenience and emergency names are sometimes used to describe anonymous masters; nonce name was at one time used.

The practice of using generic names for unidentified artists is most common in the study of art of the antiquity, especially of the Roman era or with artists of the Northern Renaissance until about 1430. Typically a pseudonym is applied after commonality is established for a grouping of works, of which a similarity of theme, style, iconography, biblical source or physical location can probably be attributed to one individual or workshop, but because of lack of surviving documentary record, the name of that individual is lost. Groupings of works under a given notname can often be contentious; in specific cases art historians have argued that the reality may be a group or school of artists working under a common influence or commercial demand. Linking a generically titled old master with a historical person is usually a tempting and exciting prospect, and would establish an art historian’s reputation.

Balthasar Paul Ommeganck – Grazing; Shepherd a…

Balthasar Paul Ommeganck – Grazing; Shepherd and Flock – 

Balthasar Paul Ommeganck (sometimes also: Paul Balthasar Ommeganck) (1755–1826) was a Flemish painter of landscapes and animals. Through his work and his role as a teacher he gave an important impetus to the revitalization of landscape painting in the Low Countries.

Ommeganck was very successful during his lifetime and his works demanded high prices. His main contribution to landscape painting was the combination in his works of the light found in the work of the Dutch Italianate painters of the 17th century with detailed observation of nature. He was thus able to find a synthesis between realism and an idealized representation of nature. His work shows a painstaking attention to detail, a sure line and subtle use of colour. His preferred subjects were undulating landscapes. He painted mainly on panel.

Ommeganck’s style was widely followed in the 18th and early 19th century. Later art critics have not always been equally positive about the work of Ommeganck. Some have made the reproach that by embedding itself in the classic tradition and through its preference for the contrived, picturesque and the conventional, the landscape tradition of Ommeganck represents a ‘hopeless traditionalism’.

He also made a few portraits such as that of the Painter Jan Baptist Berré (Royal Museum of Fine Arts Antwerp).

He was a skilled draughtsman and also worked as a sculptor producing some clay models of sheep and cows.

Balthasar Paul Ommeganck – Grazing; Shepherd a…

Balthasar Paul Ommeganck – Grazing; Shepherd and Flock – 

Balthasar Paul Ommeganck (sometimes also: Paul Balthasar Ommeganck) (1755–1826) was a Flemish painter of landscapes and animals. Through his work and his role as a teacher he gave an important impetus to the revitalization of landscape painting in the Low Countries.

Ommeganck was very successful during his lifetime and his works demanded high prices. His main contribution to landscape painting was the combination in his works of the light found in the work of the Dutch Italianate painters of the 17th century with detailed observation of nature. He was thus able to find a synthesis between realism and an idealized representation of nature. His work shows a painstaking attention to detail, a sure line and subtle use of colour. His preferred subjects were undulating landscapes. He painted mainly on panel.

Ommeganck’s style was widely followed in the 18th and early 19th century. Later art critics have not always been equally positive about the work of Ommeganck. Some have made the reproach that by embedding itself in the classic tradition and through its preference for the contrived, picturesque and the conventional, the landscape tradition of Ommeganck represents a ‘hopeless traditionalism’.

He also made a few portraits such as that of the Painter Jan Baptist Berré (Royal Museum of Fine Arts Antwerp).

He was a skilled draughtsman and also worked as a sculptor producing some clay models of sheep and cows.

Victor Wolfvoet II – Allegory of War and Peace

Victor Wolfvoet II – Allegory of War and Peace

Victor Wolfvoet (II) or Victor Wolfvoet the Younger (1612 – 1652), was a Flemish art dealer and painter of history and allegorical paintings. His artistic output was heavily influenced by Peter Paul Rubens.

Wolfvoet was active as an art dealer, became an artist rather late in life and died relatively young. This explains his fairly limited output. As his work has recently received more academic attention his known oeuvre has expanded thanks to new attributions to Wolfvoet of work formerly attributed to other artists such as Erasmus Quellinus II, Guillam Forchondt and Willem van Herp and anonymous Rubens followers.

A Bacchanal
Although there is no evidence Wolfvoet studied under Rubens, he is considered one of the most faithful followers of that artist. He often used paintings or preparatory drawings or oil sketches by Rubens as the model for his paintings. He had access to some of these through his art business and public sales of Rubens’ work in the Antwerp market. Examples are two copper paintings relating to the theme of the War between War and Peace (private collections) and an oil on canvas of Hercules and Minerva Expelling Mars (Hermitage Museum) (of which there also exists a copy on copper). In the first two copper paintings he used a palette similar to that of Rubens and achieved a harmony of tone with space, which he had learned from Rubens.

He was inspired by other artists such as Frans Francken the Younger whose versions of the Worship of theallegGolden Calf he used as a basis for his own version of this theme (in the Museo Nacional de San Carlos). Wolfvoet copied the colour of Franken’s versions but added figures and intensified the shadows on the objects and persons.

A significant portion of the output of Wolfvoet consists of relatively small-scale paintings on copper. This medium was preferred for paintings made for the export market, in particular to Spain and the Spanish South-American colonies where the copper support was highly prized both for durability and its glossy finish.

Jacob Andries Beschey – Sir Theodore Turquet…

Jacob Andries Beschey – Sir Theodore Turquet de Mayerne  – 

Sir Théodore Turquet de Mayerne (28 September 1573 – 22 March 1655) was a Genevan-born physician who treated kings of France and England and advanced the theories of Paracelsus.

Paracelsus (1493/4 – 24 September 1541), born Theophrastus von Hohenheim (full name Philippus Aureolus Theophrastus Bombastus von Hohenheim), was a Swiss physician, alchemist, and astrologer of the German Renaissance.

He was a pioneer in several aspects of the “medical revolution” of the Renaissance, emphasizing the value of observation in combination with received wisdom. He is credited as the “father of toxicology”.[

He also had a substantial impact as a prophet or diviner, his “Prognostications” being studied by Rosicrucians in the 1700s. Paracelsianism is the early modern medical movement inspired by the study of his works.

Jacob Andries Beschey (1710 in Antwerp – 1786 in Antwerp) was a Flemish painter and draughtsman who mainly painted religious paintings that were in the style of, or inspired by, Peter Paul Rubens.

Jacob Andries Beschey painted mainly religious subjects and to a lesser extent landscapes. He possibly also painted still lifes. There is mention of a hunting piece in 1945 but it is not clear where this work is located and what was the basis for the attribution.

Most of his work was inspired by the compositions of Rubens or followers of Rubens, which he may have known directly or from prints. An example is the Maria Magdalene washing the feet of Christ (Sold at Christie’s 13 April 2010 in Amsterdam, lot 92) signed and dated 1735. The picture is a mirror copy of a composition executed mainly by Anthony van Dyck together with Rubens that is in the Hermitage Museum and was based on a sketch by Rubens. The composition was known at the time through a print by the Flemish engraver Michel Natalis. It was popular with followers of Rubens and a very similar mirror version was made earlier by Victor Wolfvoet II.

The composition The Rest on the Flight into Egypt (sold at Bonhams 2 May 2012 in London, lot 60) goes back to an initial design by Giuseppe Bartolomeo Chiari, which was later reprised by Lorenzo Masucci for the Santa Maria dell’Orazione e Morte church in Rome. This was a popular composition known through many versions, both by Chiari and Masucci, which all follow the same pattern but with differences in some details. Beschey’s paintings are often on a small format.

Some of the prominent museums that hold compositions by Beschey are the Hermitage Museum (Christ and his Disciples in Emmaus), the Alte Pinakothek (The flaggelation of Christ) and the Prado Museum (The raising of the cross).

Balthasar Beschey – La Commedia dell’Arte – 

Balthasar Beschey – La Commedia dell’Arte – 

Balthasar Beschey (1708, Antwerp – 1776, Antwerp) was a Flemish painter, draughtsman and decorative painter of interiors. He started his career as landscape painter but later on switched to history and portrait painting. He played a prominent role in the development of the Academy of Arts in Antwerp and as a teacher.

Balthasar Beschey painted in the first half of his career mainly landscapes but later he switched to history and portrait painting. He also produced a number of genre paintings. In his work he often followed and even copied the work of Rubens and van Dyck in his history paintings and that of Jan Brueghel the Elder in his landscapes. A religious composition which is not derivative of Rubens is The liberation of St Peter from his chains painted for a clandestine church in Amsterdam.

The Hermitage Museum has two genre paintings by Beschey which represent the five senses, a subject popular in Flemish art. Christie’s sold another pair of genre scenes at its 30 March 2015 sale in Paris (lot 15) representing respectively a fishmarket and a Commedia dell’Arte scene.

Balthasar Beschey painted single as well as group portraits. In his Self-portrait (Royal Museum of Fine Arts Antwerp), which the artist donated in 1763 to the Academy of Antwerp, he painted himself in a flamboyant manner with his right arm loosely hanging over the back of a chair and a large palette in his left hand. He is working on a figure composition but it is not clear exactly which subject he is painting. It could be a Venus with Cupid or alternatively, an allegory, possibly of the fine arts. The work is very similar in style to French portraiture of that time. Beschey also follows the French fashion with his yellow silk jacket with frill and powdered wig.

He painted a pair of family portraits of two generations of the Cremers family, one representing the family in an outdoor setting playing music and the second representing the wedding of the parents Cremer who are all seated and making music. In the first painting, Jacob Johannes Cremers is seated on the left side between the artist who portrayed himself standing with a palette in his hand and an ecclesiast.

huariqueje: Le Puy en Velay, Auvergne    -…

huariqueje:

Le Puy en Velay, Auvergne    –   Dirk Herman Willem Filarski

Dutch, 1885-1964

Oilon canvas, 81 x 65 cm.

Dirk Herman Willem Filarski (Amsterdam, 15 October 1885 – Zeist, 28 February 1964) was a Dutch painter belonging to the Bergen School.

The Bergen School is a movement in Dutch painting between 1915 and 1925, characterized by an expressionist style with cubist influences and dark hues. The artists lived and worked in or near the North Holland artists’ village of Bergen.
Many Dutch artists have lived and worked in Bergen (NH); it is known as ‘artist colony’. Between 1915 and 1925 the Bergen School took shape in Dutch painting. Most painters of the group found housing close to the Buerweg, in the hamlet Bergen Binnen, between Bergen and Bergen aan Zee.

The founders of this movement were the French painter Henri Le Fauconnier and the Dutch painter Piet van Wijngaerdt. They got a lot of imitation of young painters who agitated against Impressionism, just as happened in France with Fauvism and in Germany with Expressionism. The painterly theories of the group are largely written down in the magazine ‘Het Signaal’.

amare-habeo: Toon Kelder (Dutch, 1894-1973) Se…

amare-habeo:

Toon Kelder (Dutch, 1894-1973)

Self-portrait with top hat, N/D

Oil on canvas, 53×33 cm

Anthonius Bernardus (Toon) Kelder (Rotterdam, 24 November 1894 – The Hague, 7 April 1973) was a Dutch painter, draftsman and sculptor.

Toon Kelder followed his education at the Royal Academy of Art in The Hague and the Rotterdam Academy of Art. He was a pupil of Alexander Henri Robert van Maasdijk and Frederik Nachtweh. Until 1945 he painted, among other things, nudes and still lifes in the traditional style of the Hague School. After 1948 he switched drastically to abstract images and he also sculpted. He drew many portraits. Kelder is counted among the New Hague School and was a member of Pulchri Studio.

Pulchri Studio (Latin:“For the study of beauty”) is a Dutch art society, art institution and art studio based in The Hague (’s-Gravenhage), Netherlands.

This institute began in 1847 at the home of painter Lambertus Hardenberg. Since 1893 the club has its residence in the villa at Lange Voorhout 15 in The Hague, which is currently a brownish aubergine color. There are accepted as members artistically working members (painters, sculptors and photographers) and art lovers. The members will be selected from a given by the general committee.

An artist membership allows the artist to exhibit his own works in the galleries of the Company. These so-called sales exhibitions have passed since the founding of the association until today integral part of this institution! Art lovers have to be invited by other members. The association leases its properties even to nonmembers, too.