Property from the SØR Rusche Collection
ADRIAEN VAN STALBEMT
Antwerp 1580 - 1662
WOODED RIVER LANDSCAPE WITH TOBIAS AND THE ANGEL
signed and dated lower centre: AV. STALBEMT (AV in ligature) / A. 162[...]
oil on oak panel, with an unidentified collector's red wax seal on the reverse
unframed: 66.5 x 105 cm.; 26¼ x 41⅜ in.
framed: 83 x 121.2 cm.; 32¾ x 47¾ in.
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The canvas has a firm lining, the paint surface is relatively clean and stable, with a clear and even varnish. There is a small damage in the centre of the upper margin. There are no other damages visible to the naked eye. Inspection under ultraviolet light reveals some significant retouchings along all four margins, and some other, more cosmetic, retouchings throughout the background. The floral elements themselves remain relatively untouched, although the varnish fluoresces opaque, which makes analysis of any previous restoration difficult. In seemingly good overall 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.
With Gebr. Douwes, Amsterdam, 1959, from whom acquired by
F.C. Butôt, Sankt Gilgen, Austria;
From whom acquired.
Dordrecht, Dordrechts Museum, Nederlandse landschappen uit de 17e eeuw, July - August 1963, no. 119;
Brussels, Musées Royaux des Beaux-Arts de Belgique, Le siècle de Rubens, 15 October - 12 December 1965, no. 268;
Salzburg, Museumpavillon im Mirabellgarten, 12 July – 12 September 1972; Münster, Westfälisches Landesmuseum, 26 September 1972 – 14 January 1973, Niederländische Kunst aus dem Goldenen Jahrhundert, unnumbered;
Rotterdam, Museum Boymans-van Beuningen, Hollandse en Vlaamse Kunst uit de 17e eeuw, 16 February – 1 April 1973, unnumbered;
Munich, Sotheby’s, A selection of paintings and drawings from the Collection of F.C. Butôt, June 1989;
Schieder-Schwalenberg, Robert-Koepke-Haus, Wege durch das Land - Inventar der Landschaft. Niederländische Landschaftsschilderungen vom 16. bis 18. Jahrhundert, June - August 2000, no. 17;
Rotterdam, Kunsthal, At Home in the Golden Age, 9 February – 18 May 2008, no. 106.
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L.J. Bol et al., Nederlandse landschappen uit de 17e eeuw, exh. cat., Dordrecht 1963, p. 35, cat. no. 119, reproduced fig. 16;
S. Speth-Holterhoff, in Le siècle de Rubens, exh. cat., Brussels 1965, p. 254, cat. no. 268, reproduced;
Niederländisches Kunst aus dem Goldenen Jahrhundert--Gemälde und Zeichnungen im Umkreis grosser Meister aus der Sammlung F.C. Butôt, exh. cat., Salzburg 1972, pp. 130-31, reproduced;
Hollandse en Vlaamse kunst uit de 17e eeuw: hoogtepunten van minder bekende meesters: schilderijen en tekeningen uit de verzameling F.C. Butôt, exh. cat., Rotterdam 1973, pp. 132-33, reproduced;
L.J. Bol, G. Keyes and F.C. Butôt, Netherlandish paintings and drawings from the collection of F.C. Butôt by little-known and rare masters of the seventeenth century, London 1981, p. 202, cat. no. 84, reproduced;
G.L. Gordon, Supplement to the Catalogue of Netherlandish Paintings and Drawings from the Collection of F.C. Butôt, London (Sotheby’s) 1989;
Wege durch das Land - Inventar der Landschaft. Niederländische Landschaftsschilderungen vom 16. bis 18. Jahrhundert, exh. cat., Schwalenberg 2000, cat. no. 17;
H.-J. Raupp (ed.), Niederländische Malerei des. 17. Jahrhunderts der SØR Rusche-Sammlung, vol. 3, Landschaften und Seestücke, Münster/Hamburg/London 2001, pp. 256-59, cat. no. 68, reproduced in colour;
W. Pijbes, M. Aarts, M. J. Bok et al., At Home in the Golden Age, exh. cat., Zwolle 2008, p. 105, cat. no. 106, reproduced in colour.
Adriaen van Stalbemt was a painter of Flemish origin who moved to Middelburg with his Protestant family after the Fall of Antwerp in 1585, when the city was forced to surrender to the Catholic Spanish forces. He most likely received his artistic training in Middelburg but later returned to Antwerp in 1609, having also spent 10 months in England, where he painted two views of Greenwich with King Charles I and Henrietta Maria in 1633-34 (Royal Collection).
This painting is one of fairly few dated works within Stalbemt's œuvre. Lack of dates on other paintings and an eclectic style make Stalbemt's chronology difficult to determine. The present panel must have been painted in Antwerp and the painterly brushstrokes, particularly in the surrounding foliage, reveal a move away from the influences of artists such as Gillis van Coninxloo and Jan Brueghel the Elder, whose meticulousness Stalbemt imitated in other works.
The subject appears to have been popular with wealthy merchants who sent their sons away on business trips, as it addresses themes of filial piety, enterprise and charity. The story is taken from the apocryphal Book of Tobit. Tobias was sent by his blind merchant father, Tobit, to collect a debt. The Archangel Raphael accompanied Tobias and instructed him to extract the heart and liver of a fish to heal his father's blindness, which Tobias did upon returning home. It is unusual to picture the act of dissecting the fish, as Stalbemt has done here.