Property from the SØR Rusche Collection
JACOBUS BILTIUS | Kitchen still life with an overturned basket of lettuce, game and vegetables, all on a wooden table draped in a white cloth
Estimate: 5,000 - 7,000 GBP
Property from the SØR Rusche Collection
The Hague 1633-1681 Bergen-op-zoom
KITCHEN STILL LIFE WITH AN OVERTURNED BASKET OF LETTUCE, GAME AND VEGETABLES, ALL ON A WOODEN TABLE DRAPED IN A WHITE CLOTH
signed and dated lower left: J: Biltius fecit Aᵒ: 1676
oil on canvas
unframed: 115.8 x 91 cm.; 45½ x 35¾ in.
framed: 131.4 x 107.4 cm.; 51¾ x 42⅛ in.
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Property from the SØR Rusche Collection is available to view at Sotheby’s, New Bond Street, 13 – 18 September (weekdays 9am – 4.30pm; weekend 12-5pm).
The canvas is lined. The paint surface is clean and the varnish is clear and even. A very slight degree of wear is visible throughout. Inspection under UV light is impeded by a thick varnish which fluoresces opaquely. There appear to be small retouchings along all four margins, probably as a result of the stretcher, and scattered in the background, particularly in the lower left and upper left corners. There is a small area of restoration around the J of the signature. There also appear to be some small retouchings in the lettuce. Overall the picture appears clear and in good 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.
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The Hague, Gemeentemuseum, 1935–60;
With Daan Cevat, London, 1960;
With S. Nystad, The Hague, from whom acquired in 1975.
Rotterdam, Kunsthal, At Home in the Golden Age, 9 February – 18 May 2008, no. 4.
The SØR Rusche Collection has been exhibited extensively over the last two decades. Please click here for further information.
A. von Wurzbach, Niederländisches Küsterlerlexikon, Leipzig 1906, vol. I, p. 99;
U. Thieme and F. Becker, Allgemeines Lexikon der Bildenden Künstler von der Antike bis zur Gegenwart, vol. IV, Leipzig 1910, p. 34;
G. Knuttel (ed.), Gemeentemuseum 's-Gravenhage: catalogus van de schilderijen aquarellen en teekeningen, The Hague 1935, p. 24, cat. no. 72;
E. Gemar-Költzsch et al, Holländische Stillebenmaler im 17. Jahrhundert, Lingen 1995, vol. II, p. 114, cat. no. 30/6, reproduced;
H.-J. Raupp (ed.), Niederländische Malerei des. 17. Jahrhunderts der SØR Rusche-Sammlung, vol. 5, Stilleben und Tierstücke, Münster/Hamburg/London 2004, pp. 66-69, cat. no. 8, reproduced in colour;
W. Pijbes, M. Aarts, M.J. Bok et al, At Home in the Golden Age, exh. cat., Zwolle 2008, p. 36, cat. no. 4, reproduced in colour.
Although Jacobus Biltius is most well-known for his trompe l'œil paintings of game birds suspended before a niche or against a monochrome wall, it is in kitchen still lifes such as the present example, signed and dated 1676, that his consummate skill in directly and accurately observing nature is further revealed.
Biltius was born in the Hague, where he was listed in 1651 as a pupil of Carel Hardy. He lived here until at least 1660 when painter's guild records mention that he went to Amsterdam. There is no record of him working in Amsterdam, but Biltius is known to have been in Maastricht from around 1666 until 1670. He moved to Antwerp in 1671 and was made a member of the guild the following year. It was here that Biltius would have likely completed the present painting, drawing inspiration from the Flemish kitchen still lifes popular in the city at the time.