51
51
Jan Havicksz. Steen
SELF PORTRAIT WITH A LUTE
Estimate
80,000120,000
LOT SOLD. 241,250 GBP
JUMP TO LOT
51
Jan Havicksz. Steen
SELF PORTRAIT WITH A LUTE
Estimate
80,000120,000
LOT SOLD. 241,250 GBP
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

Old Master Paintings Evening Sale

|
London

Jan Havicksz. Steen
LEIDEN 1626 - 1679
SELF PORTRAIT WITH A LUTE
signed lower right: J. Steen
oil on canvas
23.5 by 19 cm.; 9 1/4 by 7 1/2 in.
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Provenance

Johannes Caudri, senior member of the old East India Company (according to Lugt), Amsterdam;
His deceased sale, Amsterdam, Van der Schley, 6 September 1809, lot 63, for 40 florins to Spaan;
J.B. Mettenbrinck, ancient burgomaster of Barneveld (according to Lugt), Amsterdam;
His deceased sale, Amsterdam, Roos, 16 April 1861, lot 36, for 228 Florins to Hollander;
H.E. ten Cate, Almelo, by 1926;
By whom sold to Hans Wetzlar (according to Braun);
With D. Katz, Dieren, before the Second World War (according to Braun);
J. Lek, New York;
By whom (anonymously) sold, New York, Parke Bernet, 29 November 1961, lot 14;
Dr. Hans Wetzlar, Amsterdam, 1961.

Exhibited

Leiden, Lakenhal, Jan Steen, 1926, no 75.

Literature

C. Hofstede de Groot, A Catalogue Raisonné..., vol. I, London 1907, p. 235, no. 865b;
C.H. de Jonge, Jan Steen, Amsterdam, n.d., p. 48;
K. Braun, Alle tot nu bekende schilderijen van Jan Steen, Rotterdam 1980, p. 178, no. B-257, reproduced p. 179, as not by Jan Steen;
Voorkeuren, 1985, p. 64, reproduced p. 65.

Catalogue Note

This picture was always considered to be by Jan Steen until placed under wrong attributions by Braun ("Een zeer fraai stuk, evenwel geen zelfportret en evenmin eigenhandig").  It seems unlikely that Braun had ever seen the picture, and he probably based his judgement on a photograph.  Whether this is a self-portrait, or a caricatural study incorporating Steen's features, is a matter of definition, since Steen's self-portraits all retain a high degree of caricature, and he incorporated his own features in characters in many of his paintings.

Maarten Bijl, who wrote a pioneering essay on Steen's technique for the recent exhibition of his works in Washington and Amsterdam in 1996-97, has very kindly suggested on the basis of first hand inspection that this picture may date from the latter part of Steen's career on acount of the elongated proportions of the figure. The rapid painting technique (applied alla prima), particularly in the handling of the sleeves and the flesh tones, is typical of Steen himself.

Wouter Kloek, who was one of the three co-curators of the Jan Steen exhibition, has also kindly confirmed Steen's authorship of the Wetzlar picture, noting that the penumbra in the background around the head is typical of the artist.

Old Master Paintings Evening Sale

|
London