View full screen - View 1 of Lot 595. Holy Family within a floral garland.
595

Jan Brueghel the Elder and Workshop

Holy Family within a floral garland

Estimate:

80,000

to
- 120,000 USD

Property from a Private Collection

Jan Brueghel the Elder and Workshop

Jan Brueghel the Elder and Workshop

Holy Family within a floral garland

Holy Family within a floral garland

Estimate:

80,000

to
- 120,000 USD

Lot sold:

94,500

USD

Property from a Private Collection

Jan Brueghel the Elder and Workshop

Brussels 1568 - 1625 Antwerp

Holy Family within a floral garland


oil on panel

panel: 29 by 23 1/2 in.; 73.7 by 59.7 cm. 

framed: 35 by 29 1/2 in.; 88.9 by 74.9 cm.  

The panel is uncradled and stable, with a slight vertical convex bow. Bevelling is visible to all four edges. Overall the painting is in good condition, and the images reads well beneath a crisp varnish. There is good retention of color and detail in areas. There are no visible losses or instabilities to the surface. There is a very faint scratch in the upper right background, and there is some blanching visible to the center of the figures. Under UV: There is an area of restoration in the center background, below the figures. There are very small and scattered cosmetic spots of retouching in and around the floral garland, with only a very few scattered thin strokes of retouching in the figures. One spot of retouching in the upper left corner of the background. Painting can certainly hang in its present condition. Offered in a carved wooden frame.


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. Certain images of the lot provided online may not accurately reflect the actual condition of the lot. In particular, the online images may represent colors and shades which are different to the lot's actual color 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. The condition report is a statement of opinion only. For that reason, the condition report is not an alternative to taking your own professional advice regarding the condition of the lot. NOTWITHSTANDING THIS ONLINE CONDITION REPORT OR ANY DISCUSSIONS CONCERNING A LOT, ALL LOTS ARE OFFERED AND SOLD "AS IS" IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONDITIONS OF SALE/BUSINESS APPLICABLE TO THE RESPECTIVE SALE.

Roos collection, Antwerp;
Joseph de Prêt-Roose de Calesbergh, Antwerp, by 1877;
Count Constantin de Bousies, Brussels, 1910;
Thence by inheritence to Count Baudoin de Bousies-Borluut, Brussels;
By whom sold, London, Sotheby's, 5 July 1984, lot 339;
There acquired by a private collector;
Thence by descent.  


J. Destrée and E. Muller de Kelteboere "Une Visite à L´Art Ancien" in Revue Critique, 1910, p. 46 (as Jan Brueghel I and school of Rubens);
P. Lambotte, in Trésor de l'art Belge au XVIIe Siècle - Mémorial de l´Exposition d´Art Ancien à Bruxelles en 1910, 1912, vol. I, pp. 276, 308, reproduced plate CXXXIX;
G. Glück, "Les Peintres d´Animaux, de Fruits et de Fleurs," in Trésor de l'art Belge au XVIIe Siècle - Mémorial de l´Exposition d´Art Ancien à Bruxelles en 1910, 1912, I, p. 223 (as possibly Jan Brueghel II and a student of Rubens);
G. Glück, Rubens, van Dyck und Ihr Kreis, 1933, p. 356 (as Jan Brueghel II and pupil of Rubens);
M.L. Hairs, Les Peintres Flamands de Fleurs au XVII e Siècle, 1955, p. 43, 44, and 206, (as Jan Brueghel II and possibly Andries Snellinck);
M.L. Hairs, in De Eeuw van Rubens, exhibition catalogue, Brussels 1965, p. 246-247;
K. Ertz, Jan Brueghel der Ältere 1568 - 1625: Die Gemälde mit kritischem Oeuvrekatalog, Cologne 1979, p. 309, 311, reproduced fig. 382 (as Jan Brueghel II and Rubens[?]);
K. Ertz, Jan Brueghel der Jüngere 1601 - 1678: Die Gemälde mit kritischem Oeuvrekatalog, Freren 1984, p. 36 and p. 458, cat. no. 292, reproduced (as Jan Brueghel the Younger and circle of Peter Paul Rubens);
K. Ertz, Jan Brueghel der Ältere, Lingen 2008, vol. III, p. 1010, cat. no. 478, reproduced p. 1009 (as Jan Brueghel the Elder, Jan Brueghel the Younger, and an unidentified student of Rubens).
Antwerp, Exposition de tableaux et d'objets d'art anciens, 1877, no. 92 (as Jan Brueghel the Elder and Peter Paul Rubens);
Brussels, L'Art Belge au XVIIe Siècle, 1910, no. 15 (as Jan Brueghel I and Peter Paul Rubens);
Brussels, Palais des Beaux Arts, Brueghel. Une Dynastie de Peintres, 18 September - 18 November 1980, no. 173 (as Jan Brueghel the Younger, prior to his trip to Italy, and possibly Andrew Snellinck).

This beautiful rendering of the Holy Family within a richly detailed floral garland is a prime example of Flemish still-life painting, executed by Brueghel the Elder himself with workshop participation. Brueghel's son, Jan Brueghel the Younger, a highly accomplished master in the genre himself is the most likely collaborator on the still-life elements, along with a close student of Peter Paul Rubens who would have executed the central Holy Family. The work is a replica of a painting, similarly by Jan Brueghel the Elder and the Workshop of Rubens, today in the High Museum of Art in Atlanta.1 Both works are datable to circa 1620, prior to Jan Brueghel the Younger's trip to Italy, and they are nearly identical in composition and detail, particularly in the garland where the differences are almost imperceptible.  


It is easy to forget that Jan Brueghel started to paint independent floral still-lifes before any other artist in the Southern Netherlands. The magnificent flower-pieces that he produced in the first decade of the 17th century are so accomplished and assured that they do not feel like pioneering essays in a brand-new genre, but they were, and they went on to influence the course of flower-painting in oils in European art for centuries.


A pure or independent flower still life is a painting in which flowers, usually arranged in a vase or garland, are the principal subject of the picture, rather than forming a subordinate part of another work such as a history painting. In most flower-pieces from Brueghel onwards throughout the 17th century, the floral arrangement dominates the composition completely with, as here, a neutral dark background, or, from the following decade onwards, a plain setting of a stone niche. Insects, butterflies, snails and separate sprays of flowers or rosemary appear, but they are wholly subordinate to the principal subject. As became common practice as the genre developed, especially in Antwerp, complementary central compositions depicting mythological or religious scenes were often added by a collaborator of the main artist. 


1. Inv. no. 1989.113, oil on panel, 73 by 59 cm.