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Jeremias van Winghe (Brussels 1578-1645 Frankfurt)
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Jeremias van Winghe (Brussels 1578-1645 Frankfurt)

A roemer on a silver-gilt bekerschroef, sweetmeats in a silver tazza, langoustines on a plate, walnuts and an apple on a table top

Jeremias van Winghe (Brussels 1578-1645 Frankfurt)
A roemer on a silver-gilt bekerschroef, sweetmeats in a silver tazza, langoustines on a plate, walnuts and an apple on a table top
signed with initials and dated '·IvW· 16[07] ·' (lower right)
oil on copper
18 1/8 x 15 5/8 in. (46 x 39.7 cm.)
(?) Berg, Portland.
with Jacques Goudstikker, Amsterdam, by October 1931
Looted by the Nazi authorities, July 1940.
Recovered by the Allies, 1945.
in the custody of the Dutch Government.
Restituted in February 2006 to the heir of Jacques Goudstikker.
C. Wright, Paintings in Dutch Museums. An index of Oil Paintings in Public Collections in the Netherlands by Artists born before 1870, London, 1980, p. 488, as Jacob Walscapelle.
K. Citroen, 'Stillebengeräte in Stilleben', in Anzeiger des Germanischen Nationalmuseums, 1989, p. 159.
Old Master Paintings: An illustrated summary catalogue, Rijksdienst Beelende (The Netherlandish Office for the Fine Arts), The Hague, 1992, p. 319, no. 2841, illustrated, as Jeremias van Winghen.
Delft, Stedelijk Museum Het Prinsenhof, A Prosperous Past: The Sumptous Still Life in the Netherlands 1600-1700, 1 July-4 September 1988, no. 3; and the Fogg Art Museum, Cambridge, Ma., 1 October-27 November 1988; and the Kimbell Art Museum, Fort Worth, Texas, May-August 1989, as Jeremias van Winghen.
Frankfurt am Maine, Historischen Museums, Georg Flegel (1566-1638). Stilleben, 18 December 1993-13 February 1994, no. 134, as Jermias van Winghe (?).
Delft, Stedelijk Museum Het Prinsenhof, on loan.
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Lot Essay

This exquisite copper was first identified as a work by the rare and enigmatic artist Jeremias van Winghe (or van Winghen) by Sam Segal in the exhibition A Prosperous Past: The Sumptuous Still Life in the Netherlands 1600-1700 (op. cit., p. 57, cat. no. 3). Signed with initials 'IVW', it had previously been attributed to Jacob van Walscappelle, however, it is dated 1607 and this makes the Walscappelle attribution untenable. Taken together with a Kitchen still life in the Historiches Museum, Frankfurt, which is signed and dated 'IERAMIA. VAN.WINGE. FECIT.1613', these are the two key works in establishing a number of attributions to the artist, including A kitchen interior with a maid preparing meat and gentlemen drinking at a table beyond that was sold in these Rooms, 8 December 2004 (£397,250).

Van Winghe was born in Brussels in 1578 and initially trained as a portrait painter, establishing himself in Frankfurt after a brief trip to Italy. In addition to portraits he also painted highly finished and beautifully executed still lifes, at a time when such subject matter was still relatively new, and he must have been among the first artists to introduce such painting to Frankfurt. On marrying the daughter of a jeweller in 1616, however, he seems to have spent less time painting, and instead concentrated his energies working for his father-in-law, in what was no doubt a more profitable business. He returned to painting later in life, around 1640, and this partly explains the scarcity of his known oeuvre.

It is intriguing to speculate on van Winghe's artistic influences, although virtually nothing is known about his artistic development. Clearly the kitchen pieces owe much to the example of Pieter Aertsen and Joachim Beuckelaer, yet the smaller scale still lifes, such as the present work, are both rarer and more refined. The diverse objects, artfully placed on a tabletop, and brightly lit against a dark background, have no obvious parallel at the time, and if anything tend to prefigure the work of artists such as Osias Beert, Georg Flegel and Peter Binoit.

In this work van Winghe gave free rein to his technical mastery in depicting such diverse objects as a silver tazza, filled with tempting sweetmeats; an elaborate silver-gilt German bekerschroef finely crafted and chased with chameleons, swans and cherubs, surmounted by a half-filled roemer; two langoustines on a silver plate; walnuts, an apple and a wooden box, all placed on a marble-topped table. Each element of the work is minutely observed, and the longer one contemplates it the more one's eye is drawn to small details, such as the reflection of the langoustines in the plate, the manner in which the chameleons grasp the foot of the roemer, and the tiny chip on the edge of the tabletop. Van Winghe takes such disparate elements and expertly merges them into a harmonious composition.

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