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    Sale 3066

    Old Masters & 19th Century Art - including Dutch Impressionism

    15 - 16 November 2016, Amsterdam

  • Lot 322

    Isaac Israels (Amsterdam 1865-1934 The Hague)

    Revue girls at the Scala theater, The Hague


    Isaac Israels (Amsterdam 1865-1934 The Hague)
    Revue girls at the Scala theater, The Hague
    signed 'Isaac Israels' (lower left)
    oil on canvas
    71 x 61 cm.
    Painted circa 1924.

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    The Hague is where Isaac Israels worked most during the 1920's. Although he never quite settled, Israels travelled quite extensively during this period and he considered The Netherlands an excellent place to work because: '... nothing ever happens here and there is no distraction like in Paris ...' (see: Anna Wagner, Isaac Israels, Rotterdam 1967, p.49). The Revue girls in the present lot may have been painted on one of the many occasions that Israels sat backstage at the Scala Theatre in the Wagenstraat in The Hague. Isaac was greatly inspired by the revues he saw here in the 1920s and 30s and via his friend Alexander Voormolen (1895-1980), a Dutch composer, he got permission to work behind the scenes. In the changing rooms he had the opportunity to portray the showgirls and dancers immediately before, during and after their performances. The shows were not his main interest, as Arie Mout (1900-1978), a friend of the painter, makes clear in his writings: 'het gekke was dat Isaac Israels totaal geen begrip had voor de kwaliteit of de inhoud van de voorstelling. Als de hele zaal plat lag van plezier, bleef hij onverstoorbaar doortekenen. Wat hem interesseerde was de mens die er stond en zijn picturale mogelijkheden meer dan wat die mens aan het doen was' (see: Willemien de Vlieger-Moll, Isaac Israels in Den Haag, The Hague, 2012, p. 97). He could spend entire nights sketching, or he would sit in one of the small dressing rooms and finish several canvasses in one evening. Every detail was captured with intense passion: fast observation transmitted on the canvas with extreme dynamics and spontaneity, as can be seen in the present lot.


    Anonymous sale; Paul Brandt, Amsterdam, 16-19 May 1972, lot 229, where acquired by the father of the present owners.