• Christies auction house James Christie logo

    Sale 7575

    Old Master and British Pictures

    25 April 2008, London, King Street

  • Lot 16

    Ludolf Backhuysen (Emden 1630-1708 Amsterdam)

    A threemaster with the Amsterdam coat-of-arms, with other vessels, in a storm

    Price Realised  

    Estimate

    Ludolf Backhuysen (Emden 1630-1708 Amsterdam)
    A threemaster with the Amsterdam coat-of-arms, with other vessels, in a storm
    signed 'L B' (lower left, on a spar)
    oil on canvas, unlined, unframed, attached to the stretcher with the original wooden pegs
    13½ x 19 1/8 in. (34.3 x 48.5 cm.)


    Contact Client Service
    • info@christies.com

    • New York +1 212 636 2000

    • London +44 (0)20 7839 9060

    • Hong Kong +852 2760 1766

    • Shanghai +86 21 6355 1766

    We are grateful to Dr. Gerlinde de Beer for confirming the attribution on the basis of photographs, and for her help in cataloguing this lot. She has noted that the 'construction of the ships and the boat as well as the way in which the vessels are lying in the water is Backhuysen at his best. The waves of the stormy water are very well rendered. They are excellent. It is perfectly his style of stormy waves in a different combination. Every drawing line shows absolute certainty'. She compares this painting with the Backhuysen storm picture in the Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam, and with its replica in the North Carolina Museum of Art, Raleigh, both signed with monogram 'LB', and dating to circa 1705 (G. de Beer, Sein Leben und Werk Ludolf Backhuysen, Zwolle, pp. 150-51, nos. 95-6, figs. 185 and 187). She suggests that this picture pre-dates the Amsterdam and Raleigh storm paintings, since it is slightly less dramatised and still shows the influences of early-17th century Flemish shipping pieces, for example the work of Jan Porcellis. The Amsterdam threemaster on the left is comparable to a ship in a drawing in the Teylers Museum, Haarlem (Ludolf Backhuysen: Emden 1630 - Amsterdam 1708 : ein Versuch Leben und Werk des Künstlers zu beschreiben, exhibition catalogue, Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam, 1985, p. 104, no. 20).

    Special Notice

    No VAT will be charged on the hammer price, but VAT at 15% will be added to the buyer's premium which is invoiced on a VAT inclusive basis.


    Provenance

    P. Semeonoff-Tianshanski Collection, St. Petersburg, until 1914, when (probably) aquired by
    The State Hermitage Museum, St. Petersburg.
    Fritz Wacker, by 1934, and by descent to his son,
    Ernst Wacker (according to a label on the reverse).


    Literature

    Semeonoff-Tianshanski Collection Catalogue, St. Petersburg, 1906, no. 117.
    C. Hofstede de Groot, A Catalogue Raisonné, etc., VII, London, 1923, p. 275, no. 260.
    G. de Beer, Storm at Sea and Shipwrecks in the Work of Ludolf Backhuysen (Emden 1630 - 1708 Amsterdam). An analysis of motives and a consequent specification of motives and critical catalogue of works, (unpublished dissertation), Kiel 1993, p. 205, no. 3.