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M.S. Robinson, The paintings of the Willem van de Veldes, London 1990, vol. II, p. 886-7, cat. no. 615.
Through the 1650s van de Velde's style was still developing, and it was during this early stage in his career that he was known to have collaborated with other artists on various pictures. This cloud covered marine landscape with vessels would appear to be such a work from that formative moment. Robinson dates the picture to circa 1658, and while supporting an attribution to van de Velde, also suggests that this may be a collaboration with Hendrik Dubbels (1621-1707) one of van de Velde's primary studio collaborators during the 1650s.1 Many works from this early period are difficult to assess, and the extent of van de Velde's participation in relation to his studio remains a topic of debate. Indeed, the cumulus cloud filled sky and choppy waters do seem quite typical of his early style, while the two prominently placed single masted boats, in a regatta like arrangement, may have been executed by a different hand.
A possible second version with slight variations is recorded by Robinson as being sold by Bukowski's, Stockholm, on 30 October-1 November 1946, lot 148. Though described as being signed in monogram, it does appear to be weaker in execution than the present canvas.2
1. Robinson, op. cit., p. 886.
2. Ibid, p. 887.
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