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Paulus Potter (Enkhuizen 1625-1654 Amsterdam)
Paulus Potter (Enkhuizen 1625-1654 Amsterdam)

Herdsmen and their animals sheltering from a storm

Paulus Potter (Enkhuizen 1625-1654 Amsterdam)
Herdsmen and their animals sheltering from a storm
with signature 'Paulus. Potter. f.' (in brown ink)
black chalk, heightened with white, on brown-grey paper, brown ink framing lines
7 3/8 x 9 ½ in. (18.7 x 24.1 cm.)
Anonymous sale; Sotheby's, London, 21 March 1973, lot 43, where purchased by I.Q. van Regteren Altena.
Rotterdam, Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, Paris, Fondation Custodia, and Brussels, Bibliothèque Albert 1er, Le Cabinet d’un Amateur: Dessins flamands et hollandais des XVIe et XVIIe siècles d’une collection privée d’Amsterdam, 1976-77, no. 101, pl. 55 (catalogue by J. Giltaij).
The Hague, Mauritshuis, ‘t Land van Paulus Potter, 1994-1995 (no catalogue published).
The Hague, Mauritshuis, Paulus Potter: Paintings, Drawings and Etchings, 2005, no. 37 (catalogue entry by B. Broos).

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Lot Essay

One of a number of drawings executed in the same technique and showing similar pastoral subjects that were executed in the mid-1640s. Other sheets from the group include the Cow calving in a barn (Albertina, Vienna; The Hague, 2005, no. 37, fig. 1) and the deer in a wood (Crocker Art Museum, Sacramento; The Hague, 2005, no. 35, fig. 1). The latter is a version of a composition also seen in a drawing from the Rijksmuseum, which is dated 1647, thereby suggesting a date for the whole series (The Hague, 2005, no. 35). None of the drawings seems to be in preparation for a painting. In the present drawing Potter shows three peasants taking refuge under a thatched roof from the storm that rages around them, suggested by the vigorous strokes of chalk in the sky and the buffeted trees on the left-hand side of the sheet. One of the men, seated, appears to be stroking a dog at his feet while the other two may be drawing water from a pump or, alternatively, passing the time by dancing.

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