Described by Keyes (loc. cit.) as ‘one of the most fluent and engaging studies by him to have survived,’, this drawing treats a theme that Wouwerman depicted on various occasions, in paintings as well as drawings. In handling, this drawing most closely resembles the Encampment, in the Lugt Collection.3 As regards paintings, the closest in composition to the present drawing is a panel in a German private collection, which Birgit Schumacher dates to the first half of the 1660s.4
As Frits Duparc pointed out in his recent essay on Wouwerman's drawings (the only publication to date on this subject), the elaborate form of the artist’s monogram that we see here is typically only found in his later works, dating from the later 1640s and thereafter.5 The prominent signature, completeness of composition, and lack of a direct link with any surviving painting, all suggest that the drawing was most likely made as a finished work, for sale, rather than as a study for a painting.
1. Sold, London, Sotheby's, 4 July 2012, lot 91; Metropolitan Museum inv. no. 2013.144
2. Sold, London, Sotheby’s, 8 July 2015, lot 93
3. Paris, Fondation Custodia, Frits Lugt Collection, inv. 6507
4. B. Schumacher, Philips Wouwerman, The Horse Painter of the Golden Age, 2 vols., Doornspijk 2006, vol. I, pp. 354-5, no. A464, reproduced vol. II, plate 434
5. F. Duparc and Q. Buvelot, Philips Wouwerman (1619-1668), exhib. cat., Kassel, Gemäldegalerie Alter Meister, and The Hague, Mauritshuis, 2009-10, pp. 38-41
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