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Frans Snyders (Antwerp 1579-1657)
Frans Snyders (Antwerp 1579-1657)

Still life of game, fish and fruit on a table, with a boy teasing a dog on the right

Details
Frans Snyders (Antwerp 1579-1657)
Still life of game, fish and fruit on a table, with a boy teasing a dog on the right
black chalk, pen and brown ink, brown wash, black ink framing lines (trimmed), watermark horn within crest
8 7/8 x 15 3/8 in. (21.3 x 39 cm.)
Provenance
Gilbert Paignon Dijonval (1708-1792), and by descent to his grandson
Vicomte Charles-Gilbert Morel de Vinde (1759-1852), whose collection was purchased en bloc in 1819 by
Samuel Woodburn (1786-1853), London, by whom sold to
Thomas Dimsdale (1758-1823) (L. 2426), by whose heirs sold in 1824 to
Samuel Woodburn, by whom sold to
Sir Thomas Lawrence (1769-1830) (L. 2445).
Samuel Woodburn; Christie's, London, 4-8 June 1860, lot 932 ('Francis Snyders. 932. A larder, with a peacock and fruit - pen and bistre. From the Collection of T. Dimsdale, Esq.'; 3 guineas to Ensor).
Charles Morin; R.W.P. de Vries, Amsterdam, 10-11 May 1927, lot 455; where purchased by I.Q. van Regteren Altena for 143 guilders and 75 cents (Inventory book: '327. t. F. Snijders Stilleven').
Literature
M. Bénard, Cabinet de M. Paignon Dijonval, Paris, 1810, p. 67, no. 1368 ('Sneyders [François], né en 1579, mort en 1657. 1368. Une table chargée de gibier, et vers la droite un homme tenant le pied d'un cerf: d. à la plume lavé de bistre sur papier blanc; l. 14 po. sur 8 po.').
E. Greidl, Les Peintres Flamands de Nature Morte au XVIIe Siècle, Brussels, 1956, p. 186.
H. Robels, 'Frans Snyders' Entwicklung als Stillebenmaler', Wallraf-Richartz-Jahrbuch, XXXI, 1969, p. 91, note 55.
G. Keyes, 'Still Life Drawings by Fyt and Snyders',The Burlington Magazine, CIXX, no. 889, April 1977, p. 311.
E. Greindl, Les Peintres Flamands de Nature Morte au XVIIe Siècle, Brussels, 1983 (2nd edition), p. 379, no. 266.
H. Robels, Frans Snyders: Stilleben und Tiermaler 1579-1657, Munich, 1989, p. 409, no. Z13.
Exhibited
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. 125, pl. 113 (catalogue by J. Giltaij).

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Lot Essay

Snyders’s still lives of kitchen tables groaning with fruit, vegetables and game are one of the most enduringly popular aspects of his art, and this large drawing with its fluid use of wash and confident penmanship is a striking example of the artist’s preparatory studies. It is related to a painting in the Westfälisches Landesmuseum für Kunst und Kulturgeschichte in Münster (Fig. 1), and seems to have been developed from a very similar composition in an earlier painting formerly in the Huldchinsky Collection (Robels, op. cit., 48 I). There are a few minor differences between the drawing and the painting in Münster, most notably in the figure of the boy at the right, who holds up a leg bone to keep it away from an eager dog. In the drawing the boy wears a broad collar and a hat, both of which are absent in the painting. Robels points out that the differences are most likely explained by the fact that the figure in the painting appears to be from the hand of Erasmus Quellinus II (1607-1678), a pupil and collaborator of Snyders.

The drawing has a particularly distinguished provenance. It is first documented in the great collection formed by Gerard Paignon Dijonval (1708-1792), which was sold en bloc by his nephew, Charles-Gilbert Morel de Vindé (1759-1852), to the English dealer Samuel Woodburn (1786-1853). It then passed into the collection of Thomas Dimsdale (1758-1823) and later that of Sir Thomas Lawrence (1769-1830), with Woodburn acting as the agent for the transaction in each case. It returned to Woodburn for the final time after Lawrence's death, along with the rest of the painter's superlative collection, as settlement for Lawrence's outstanding debts to Woodburn.

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