Lot 108
  • 108

CORNELIS GERRITSZ DECKER | A farmhouse beside a canal

30,000 - 50,000 GBP
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  • Cornelis Decker
  • A farmhouse beside a canal
  • indistinctly signed and dated lower right: C Decke... 165...bears signature and date lower right: 166... Ruisdael
  • oil on oak panel
  • 47 x 63.5 cm


J.A. Baron van Heeckeren van Molecaten (1877–1959), Arnhem;
His sale, Arnhem, P. Brandt, 7 November 1961, lot 229 (as Roelof van Vries);
J. van Duyvendijk, Scheveningen, 1962 (as Jacob van Ruisdael);
With P. de Boer, Amsterdam, 1963;
F.C. Butôt (1906–92), Sankt Gilgen, Austria;
His posthumous sale, Amsterdam, Sotheby's, 16 November 1993, lot 17, for 46,000 Dutch Guilders, when acquired.


Dordrecht, Dordrechts Museum, Zee-, Rivier- en Oever-gezichten, 12 July – 24 September 1964, no. 23;
Salzburg, Museumpavillon im Mirabellgarten, 12 July – 12 September 1972; Münster, Westfälisches Landesmuseum, 26 September 1972 – 14 January 1973, Niederländische Kunst aus dem Goldenen Jahrhundert;
Rotterdam, Museum Boymans-van Beuningen, Hollandse en Vlaamse Kunst uit de 17e eeuw, 16 February – 1 April 1973;
Munich, Sotheby’s, A selection of paintings and drawings from the Collection of F.C. Butôt, June 1989;
Paderborn, Städtische Galerie in der Reithalle Schloß Neuhaus, Schiffsbruch vor felsiger Küste – Niederländische Landschaften und Seestücke  des 17. Jahrhunderts, 23 August – 4 November 2001;
Erfurt, Angermuseum, Unter weitem Himmel – Holländische Landschaftsbilder des 'Goldenen Jahrhunderts' aus der Sammlung SØR Rusche, 10 February – 21 April 2002;
Dessau, Anhaltische Gemäldegalerie, Bauern, Fischer, Vagabunden Niederländische Landschaftsmalerei des 17. Jahrhunderts aus der SØR Rusche Sammlung, 16 November 2003 – 6 January 2004;
Franz Radziwill Haus, Varel/Dangast, Franz Radziwill: Blick nach Holland, 13 March 2005 – 8 January 2006, no. 28; 
Liesborn, Museum Abtei Liesborn, Landschaften und Seestücke, 9 December 2007 – 27 January 2008;
Rotterdam, Kunsthal, At Home in the Golden Age, 9 February – 18 May 2008, no. 73;
Gera, Kunstsammlung Gera / Orangerie, Landschaft entdecken – Niederländische Kunst des 17. Jahrhunderts im Dialog mit zeitgenössischen Positionen aus der Sammlung SØR Rusche, 16 July 15 October 2008;
Osnabrück, Kunsthalle Osnabrück, Schöne Landschaft - Bedrohte Natur: Alte Meister im Dialog mit zeitgenössischer Kunst. Landschaftsbilder aus der SØR Rusche Sammlung Oelde/Berlin, 9 June – 13 October 2013;
Nuremberg, Auf AEG, Gute Kunst? Wollen!, 19 September – 17 October 2015.


Zee-, Rivier- en Oever-gezichten, exh. cat., Dordrecht 1964, cat. no. 23, reproduced pl. 89;
K.J. Müllenmeister, Meer und Land im Licht des 17.Jahrhunderts, vol. I, Bremen 1973, p. 156, reproduced;
Niederländisches Kunst aus dem Goldenen Jahrhundert--Gemälde und Zeichnungen im Umkreis grosser Meister aus der Sammlung F.C. Butôt, exhib. cat., Salzburg 1972, pp. 36–37, reproduced;
Hollandse en Vlaamse kunst uit de 17e eeuw: hoogtepunten van minder bekende meesters: schilderijen en tekeningen uit de verzameling F.C. Butôt, exhib. cat., Rotterdam 1973, pp. 36–37, reproduced;
L.J. Bol, Holländische Maler des 17. Jahrhunderts nahe den grossen Meistern, Braunschweig 1973, pp. 207–09, reproduced p. 208, fig. 202;
L.J. Bol & G. Keyes, Netherlandish Paintings and Drawings from the Collection of F.C. Butôt, London 1981, pp. 15, 94–95, cat. no. 30, reproduced in colour;
H.-J. Raupp (ed.), Niederländische Malerei des. 17. Jahrhunderts der SØR Rusche-Sammlung, vol. 3, Landschaften und Seestücke, Münster/Hamburg/London 2001, pp. 62–65, cat. no. 10, reproduced in colour (as dated 1652);
B. Haak, The Golden Age: Dutch Painters of the Seventeenth Century, Zwolle 2003, pp. 384–85, reproduced fig. 816 (as signed and dated 1652);
E. Seeber, Franz Radziwill: Blick nach Holland, Oldenburg 2005, pp. 170–71, reproduced in colour p. 171 and on the front cover;
W. Pijbes, M. Aarts, M.J. Bok et al, At Home in the Golden Age, exhib. cat., Zwolle 2008, p. 82, cat. no. 73, reproduced in colour.


The panel is cradled and appears to be formed of two horizontal planks, and is flat and stable. The paint surface is clean, with a clear and even varnish. Inspection under ultraviolet light reveals a combination of small, spot retouchings and looser wash retouchings throughout the sky, as well as a horizontal line of retouching extending from the centre of the left margin approx. 8 cm. long, but there appears to be little restoration in the rest of the composition - save for a handful of spot retouchings in the roof of the building (centre), in the tree next to this, and a couple in the dilapidated shelter. The painting is in overall good condition, and appears fresh and ready to hang, without a need for further intervention.
"In response to your inquiry, we are pleased to provide you with a general report of the condition of the property described above. Since we are not professional conservators or restorers, we urge you to consult with a restorer or conservator of your choice who will be better able to provide a detailed, professional report. Prospective buyers should inspect each lot to satisfy themselves as to condition and must understand that any statement made by Sotheby's is merely a subjective, qualified opinion. Prospective buyers should also refer to any Important Notices regarding this sale, which are printed in the Sale Catalogue.

Catalogue Note

Although we do not know who taught him, Decker was clearly strongly influenced by his Haarlem townsman Jacob van Ruisdael. In this painting, arguably his finest known work, he has fully absorbed Ruisdael's early style of the late 1640s.