Property from a European Private Collection
FOLLOWER OF JACOB DE BACKER
THE LAST JUDGMENT
oil on oak panel
unframed: 108.9 x 77.5 cm.; 42⅝ x 30½ in.
framed: 122.6 x 92.3 cm.; 48¼ x 36⅜ in.
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Property from Various Owners is available to view at the Sotheby’s Greenford Park warehouse, 13 and 16 – 18 September (10 - 4pm), by appointment.
The panel is cradled and relatively flat and stable. A repaired join or split runs down the centre of the panel, with associated retouching visible along its length. There are two vertical joins or splits running the height of the panel either side of centre, and two further vertical splits, one running from the lower left corner, the other from the upper right corner, each of which extends approximately to the centre of the panel. A handful of other shorter, vertical splits have been visibly restored, notably in the upper left and lower right corners. The paint surface is dirty and the varnish is discoloured. Inspection under ultraviolet light is impeded by the thick, opaque varnish, but confirms retouching along all the aforementioned splits. A strip, approx. an inch wide, of retouching also runs along the left margin, and there is some restoration to the lower right corner. There appear to be other, small scattered retouchings, but it is difficult to discern their extent beneath the varnish. The painting is in overall moderate condition.
The lot is sold in the condition it is in at the time of sale. The condition report is provided to assist you with assessing the condition of the lot and is for guidance only. Any reference to condition in the condition report for the lot does not amount to a full description of condition. The images of the lot form part of the condition report for the lot provided by Sotheby's. Certain images of the lot provided online may not accurately reflect the actual condition of the lot. In particular, the online images may represent colours and shades which are different to the lot's actual colour and shades. The condition report for the lot may make reference to particular imperfections of the lot but you should note that the lot may have other faults not expressly referred to in the condition report for the lot or shown in the online images of the lot. The condition report may not refer to all faults, restoration, alteration or adaptation because Sotheby's is not a professional conservator or restorer but rather the condition report is a statement of opinion genuinely held by Sotheby's. For that reason, Sotheby's condition report is not an alternative to taking your own professional advice regarding the condition of the lot.
Please note, Condition 11 of the Conditions of Business for Buyers (Online Only) is not applicable to this lot.
In the collection of the present owners for at least two generations.
Numerous versions of this composition exist, including the painting sold at Christie's, New York, 28 January 2015, lot 107, which has been identified as the autograph prototype of the design.1 Another version, in Antwerp Cathedral, is also considered autograph. A painting on canvas and in horizontal format, in the Koninklijk Museum voor Schone Kunsten, Antwerp, was formerly considered to be the source for this composition, but the painting's authenticity was dismissed by Dirk de Vos in 1973.2
2 D. de Vos, 'Het 'Laatste Oordeel' door Jacob de Backer: een problem van oorspronkelijkheid', in Bulletin Koninklijke musea voor schone kunsten van België, vol. XXII, 1973, pp. 59-72.