119
119

PROPERTY FROM THE ARTHUR FELDMANN COLLECTION

Dutch School, 17th Century
THE MURDER OF A SPANISH COLONIST IN THE AMERICAS
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119

PROPERTY FROM THE ARTHUR FELDMANN COLLECTION

Dutch School, 17th Century
THE MURDER OF A SPANISH COLONIST IN THE AMERICAS
前往

拍品詳情

西洋古典油畫及素描

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倫敦

Dutch School, 17th Century
THE MURDER OF A SPANISH COLONIST IN THE AMERICAS
Pen and brown ink and brown and grey wash, over red chalk, within brown ink framing lines; indented and blackened on the reverse for transfer;
bears attributions in pencil, versoPost, and (in the hand of Arthur Feldmann) Matthäus Merian
133 by 180 mm
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來源

Rudolf Peltzer, Cologne (L.2231);
Arthur Feldmann, Brno,
sale, Lucerne, Gilhofer & Ranschburg, 28 June 1934, lot 214 (as Frans Jansz. Post), unsold,
looted by the Gestapo during the Nazi occupation of Czechoslovakia;
accessioned by the National Gallery, Prague, inv. nos. DK 4600 (bears their mark, versoNGGS/PRAHA, not in Lugt);
restituted to the heirs of Arthur Feldmann in 2015

相關資料

This intriguing drawing relates to plate five in the fourth volume of Theodor de Bry's America, an epic 13-volume series of publications and re-publications of a wide variety of accounts of the activities, travels and tribulations of European colonists and explorers in the Americas.  The volumes were published over a period of many years, from 1590 to 1634.

The fourth volume in the series was issued in 1594, under the title: Americae pars quarta. Sive, Insignis & admiranda historia de reperta premium Occidentali India a Christophoro Columbo anno MCCCCXCII.  The text, a Latin translation of Giralmo Benzoni’s Historia del Mondo Nuovo (Venice 1565), is essentially a great catalogue of atrocities committed by the Spanish during the course of their colonial activities in the New World.  Unlike the original edition of 1565, De Bry’s publication of the text was illustrated with a number of engravings, including one (fig. 1) which is clearly linked to the present drawing in terms of composition.  The artist responsible for the designs for the illustrations to this volume is not recorded, but in any case, the present drawing cannot be considered the preparatory study for the engraving.  Although the drawing is indented for transfer, it is in the same direction as the print, and, more importantly, there are many significant differences between the two compositions: for example, the engraved image shows two separate groups of natives on the shore, each surrounding the dead body of a Spaniard, whereas in the drawing only one such group appears.  The type of vegetation seen in each image is also entirely different, suggesting they were meant to depict very different locations. 

Stylistically, the present drawing also seems significantly later in date, and is broadly reminiscent of the works of later 17th-century Dutch designers of book illustrations such as Jan Goeree, Romeyn de Hooghe or Gerard Hoet. The most logical explanation would seem to be that the image from De Bry’s 1594 publication was taken up and adapted by a later illustrator, perhaps even to illustrate an entirely different text, but until a directly related print or drawing is identified, both the function and the authorship of this intriguing drawing remain a puzzle.

The drawing belonged to the illustrious Czech collector Dr. Arthur Feldmann, whose collection was extensively looted during World War II.  A significant group of restituted Feldmann drawings was sold at Sotheby's in London on 6 July 2005; for a full account of the collection and its fate, see the introduction preceding lot 11 in that sale catalogue.

西洋古典油畫及素描

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倫敦