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Attributed to Ferdinand Bol (Dordrecht 1616-1680 Amsterdam)
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Attributed to Ferdinand Bol (Dordrecht 1616-1680 Amsterdam)

Abraham and the Three Angels

Attributed to Ferdinand Bol (Dordrecht 1616-1680 Amsterdam)
Abraham and the Three Angels
oil on canvas
22¼ x 28½ in. (56.5 x 72.4 cm.)
P. Bergner, Prague.
Hermann Emden, Hamburg; sale, Lepke, Berlin, 3 May 1910, lot 64, as Govaert Flinck.
A. von Lanna, Berlin; sale, Paul Cassirer, Berlin, 6 November 1929, lot 43, as Ferdinand Bol.
with Galerie Internationale, The Hague, circa 1930.
Königs collection, Haarlem.
with Galerie Sanct Lucas, Vienna, 1930, from whom acquired by Ernst Cohen, Berlin, 23 June 1930, and by descent to the present owner.
A. Pigler, Barockthemen. Eine Auswahl von Verzeichnissen zur Ikonographie des 17. und 18. Jahrhunderts, Budapest, 1956, I, p. 38, as Ferdinand Bol.
W.R. Valentier, 'Notes on old and modern drawings. Drawings by Bol', Art Quarterly, 1957, XX, p. 60, fig. 21, as possibly by Bol.
J.W. Moltke, Govaert Flinck 1615-1660, Amsterdam, 1965, pp. 224-5, no. 5, as Ferdinand Bol.
W. Sumowski, Drawings of the Rembrandt School, New York, 1979, I, p. 494, as by an anonymous member of the Rembrandt School who was influenced by Bol.
A. Blankert, Ferdinand Bol (1616-1680). Rembrandt's Pupil, Doornspijk, 1982, p. 162, no. R5, as by an unidentified follower of Rembrandt.
W. Sumowski, Gemälde der Rembrandt Schüler. Addenda, Landau/Pfalz 1983, V, no. 2006, as Ferdinand Bol.
J. Giltaij, De tekeningen van Rembrandt en zijn school in het Museum Boymans-van Beuningen, Rotterdam, 1988, p. 124, under cat. no. 3, as anonymous Rembrandt school.
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Lot Essay

The attribution of the present lot to Ferdinand Bol was first proposed by Dr. Wilhelm Bode in his catalogue raisonné for the Van Lanna sale in 1929. The painting was subsequently published by Valentier, who dated the work to the late 1630s, shortly after the artist left Rembrandt's workshop. Professor Werner Sumowski believes the present lot to be a fully autograph work by Bol, dating it to circa 1650. He compares the painting to a drawing by Ferdinand Bol in the Boymans-van Beuningen Museum, Rotterdam. Dr. Alfred Blankert, though noting that the painting shows clearly the influence of Rembrandt, believes the work to be stylistically closer to Flinck.

Though this painting is believed to have been executed after the Ferdinand Bol's departure from Rembrandt's workshop, the influence of the latter is exemplified here. Abraham and the Three Angels is close in style to the biblical scenes painted by Rembrandt between 1635 and 1640. It has been suggested that the present lot was directly inspired by Pieter Lastman's painting of the same subject in the Hermitage, St. Petersburg, which in turn, Sumowski notes, was based on a small painting by Rembrandt (private collection).

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