Master Paintings and Drawings

Master Paintings and Drawings

View full screen - View 1 of Lot 23. An artist in his studio, seated on a stool, in front of an easel, with a pipe raised to his mouth.

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Pieter Codde

An artist in his studio, seated on a stool, in front of an easel, with a pipe raised to his mouth

Lot Closed

March 23, 02:24 PM GMT


8,000 - 12,000 USD

Lot Details


Sold Without Reserve

Pieter Codde

Amsterdam 1599 - 1678

An artist in his studio, seated on a stool, in front of an easel, with a pipe raised to his mouth

oil on panel

panel: 13 by 10 ⅛ in.; 33 by 25.7 cm. 

framed: 17 by 14 in.; 43.2 by 35.6 cm.

Madame Narbonne (according to an old label on the reverse);

Le Clerq collection, the Netherlands (as attributed to Pieter Codde);

P.A.B. Widener, Asbhourne near Philadelphia (as Jean le Duck);

Anonymous sale ("The Property of a Gentleman"), London, Christie's, 23 April 1910, lot 131 (as P. Codde);

Mr. and Mrs. Walter L. Pulkowski, Berlin;

Art market, Amsterdam, circa 1936-1939;

Robert P. Weimann, Ansonia, 1968;

Egbert Haverkamp-Begemann, New York, from at least 1991-2006;

Anonymous sale, New York, Sotheby's, 31 January 2019, lot 202;

There acquired.

Catalogue of Paintings forming the private collection of P.A.B. Widener, Ashbourne, near Philadelphia, Paris 1885-1900, vol. II, cat. no. 186 (as Jean le Duck);

H. van Hall, Portraits of Dutch Painters and other Artists of the Low Countries: specimen of an ionography: repertorium, Amsterdam 1963, p. 63;

H.J. Raupp, Untersuchungen zu Künstlerbildnis und Künstlerdarstellung in den Niederlanden im 17. Jahrhundert, Hildesheim 1984, p. 235, reproduced fig. 141;

B. Schnackenburg, "Der lustlose Student," in Rembrandt: Genie auf der Suche, exhibition catalogue, Zwolle 2006, p. 199, reproduced fig. 19;

L. Kleinert, Atelierdarstellungen in der niederländischen Genremalerei des 17. Jahrhunderts - realistisches Abbild oder glabwürdiger Schein, Petersberg 2006. p. 192, reproduced fig. 7a;

J. Rosen, Pieter Codde (1599-1678). Catalogue Raisonné, Newcastl upon Thyne, 2020, p. 368, cat. no. 89B, reproduced.

Together with Dirck Hals, Hendrick Pot and Willem Buytewech, Pieter Codde played a key role in the development of genre painting in Amsterdam during the first half of the seventeenth century. What is remarkable about the present genre scene is how he captured it with such natural immediacy. An artist, dressed in a dark costume with a white collar, sits in a relaxed pose in front of an easel. He looks directly out at the audience with a degree of familiarity as he lifts a tobacco pipe to his mouth and rests his arm on a chair. With his right foot planted on the ground in front of him, he stretches his left out and places it on the lower rungs of a nearby stool, topped with various wares such as additional tobacco pipes and a glass filled with liquids. His discarded artist’s palette has been replaced with a delicate sheet of paper, upon which lay a few leaves of tobacco. 

This composition is rendered with a realism that is typical of Codde, and the utmost care is taken in capturing small details within the scene, from the colors atop the palette, to the folds of the thick clothing, and to the thin strings stretching the canvas on the easel.  The coloring employed is also characteristic of his muted palette, restricted to mostly shades of green and brown, which allowed for him to concentrate on representations of light and texture within the scene.  

This composition, which can be closely compared to his self-portrait in the Museum Boijmans van Beuningen in Rotterdam,1 appears to have been both popular and successful for Codde, for he executed a number of versions on this same small scale. Other examples, all of which are unsigned, are found in the Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg2 and the Hallywlska Museum in Stockholm,3 among others. 

A painting of an Artist at his Easel by Codde appeared at an auction in Dusseldorf at Hugo Helbing on 11 March 1933, lot 19, although it is not possible to firmly link this to any of known versions of the composition.4

1. Oil on panel, 30.5 by 25 cm., monogrammed PC, inv. no. 1125.

2. Oil on panel, 31 by 23.5 cm., inv. no. 3502.

3. Oil on panel, 32 by 25 cm., inv. no. B.46.

4. Oil on panel, 34 by 26 cm.