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Jacob van Walscapelle (Dordrecht 1644-1727 Amsterdam)
These lots have been imported from outside the EU … Read more IMPORTANT DUTCH CABINET PICTURES FROM A DISTINGUISHED PRIVATE COLLECTION (LOTS 54-60)
Jacob van Walscapelle (Dordrecht 1644-1727 Amsterdam)

A peony, an iris, a poppy, anemones, morning glory and other flowers, in a glass vase, with a caterpillar, a beetle and other insects, on a stone ledge

Details
Jacob van Walscapelle (Dordrecht 1644-1727 Amsterdam)
A peony, an iris, a poppy, anemones, morning glory and other flowers, in a glass vase, with a caterpillar, a beetle and other insects, on a stone ledge
signed 'Jacob: Walscappell / Fecit.' (lower left)
oil on panel
9 7/8 x 8 in. (25.1 x 20.3 cm.)
Provenance
Private collection, since the 19th century, and by descent in the family until 1998.
Anonymous sale [The Property of a Gentleman]; Christie's, London, 16 December 1998, lot 18 (£353,500 to the following).
with Richard Green, London, from whom acquired by the present owner.
Exhibited
London, Richard Green, The Cabinet Pictures: Dutch and Flemish Masters of the Seventeenth Century, 14 April-7 May 1999.
Special notice

These lots have been imported from outside the EU for sale using a Temporary Import regime. Import VAT is payable (at 5%) on the Hammer price. VAT is also payable (at 20%) on the buyer’s Premium on a VAT inclusive basis. When a buyer of such a lot has registered an EU address but wishes to export the lot or complete the import into another EU country, he must advise Christie's immediately after the auction.

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Lot Essay

This beautifully signed still life by Jacob van Walscapelle, which is in pristine condition, epitomises the jewel-like refinement that characterises the very best cabinet pictures of the Dutch Golden Age. When it was sold in these Rooms in 1998, it had been in the same private collection since the 19th century and had never before been published, and as such constituted an important rediscovery and addition to Walscapelle’s oeuvre. Lush and vibrant, this exquisite flower-piece, showing a range of early summer blooms, is a tour de force of tactile representation: from the prickly stems of the rosebuds at lower centre and the soft hairs on the caterpillar’s back; to the fragile petals of the iris and poppy, painted in a brilliant, saturated red; and the translucent glass vase and droplets of water trickling languidly over the cool stone plinth.

Although Walscapelle’s life is relatively well documented, little is known about his artistic activity. Born in Dordrecht as Jacobus Cruydenier, Walscapelle later adopted his maternal great-grandfather’s surname, van Walscapelle, and in the mid-1660s was a pupil of the Amsterdam still-life painter Cornelis Kick. Walscapelle’s fower paintings closely resembled those of Kick until around 1670, when he became more interested in the work of still-life masters Jan Davidsz. De Heem and Abraham Mignon, and began producing meticulously rendered, strongly lit and sharply defined fruit and fower pictures, of which this is an exceptional example. From 1673 until his death in 1727, Walscapelle became increasingly involved in public affairs, which possibly explains the fact that no signed and dated works are known after 1685.

Fred Meijer, of The RKD, The Hague, has noted the stylistic similarities between the present picture and Walscapelle’s flower-piece in the Koninklijk Museum voor Schone Kunsten in Brussels (Inv. no. 6130), and dates both works to the mid-1680s.

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