The Property of a Lady
PAUL THEODOR VAN BRUSSEL | Still life of roses, an iris, a tulip and other flowers in an urn, on a stone ledge with a butterfly and a bird's nest
Estimate: 20,000 - 30,000 GBP
The Property of a Lady
PAUL THEODOR VAN BRUSSEL
Zuid-Polsbroeck 1754 - 1795 Amsterdam
Still life of roses, an iris, a tulip and other flowers in an urn, on a stone ledge with a butterfly and a bird's nestS
signed and dated lower right on the ledge: P. T. van Brussel. 1790
oil on panel
44.4 x 36 cm.; 17½ x 14⅛ in.
The single oak panel is cradled, flat and stable. The paint surface is clean and the varnish is thick and slightly discoloured - the surface of the painting is very smooth, and the varnish has developed some fine, diagonal lines of craquelure, which have become most apparent in the urn. In raking light it is also possible to discern a retouched short, diagonal superficial scratch or surface split, extending from the upper left corner, measuring 7 cm. Inspection under ultraviolet light is impeded by the varnish, which fluoresces opaquely, but confirms the aforementioned restoration, as well as a few other scattered pinprick retouchings in the upper left and lower left corners, and a small spot in the background above the tulip, upper right. The rest of the composition would appear to remain untouched, however, and in very good overall condition.
"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.
NOTWITHSTANDING THIS REPORT OR ANY DISCUSSIONS CONCERNING A LOT, ALL LOTS ARE OFFERED AND SOLD AS IS" IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONDITIONS OF BUSINESS PRINTED IN THE SALE CATALOGUE."
With M. Bernard, London, 1951–54 (when advertised in The Illustrated London News, 21 June 1952, p. 1061; and in The Connoisseur, August 1954);
William Fraser, 1st Baron Strathalmond (1888–1970), London, 1956;
Thence by descent to the present owner.
Norwich Castle Museum, Still-Life, Bird and Flower Paintings, Norwich 1955, p. 11, under cat. no. 7;
P. Mitchell, European Flower Painters, London 1973, p. 72.
London, M. Bernard, 17th, 18th and 19th century flower paintings, 6 June – 31 July 1952, no. 15;
London, Royal Academy, Winter Exhibition. European Masters of the Eighteenth Century, 27 November 1954 – 27 February 1955, no. 124A (lent by M. Bernard).
Many flower painters, including Paul Theodor van Brussel, one of the most accomplished still life artists of his day, repeated their compositions in autograph replicas. The present work and the prime version of the composition are described by Mitchell (see Literature) as 'a superb example' illustrating this practice. The prototype was sold at Christie's, London, 15 April 1992, lot 33, and was exhibited alongside the present painting at the Royal Academy in 1954 (see Exhibited, no. 124, lent by Thomas Upcher).