Jacob Isaacksz. van Ruisdael (Haarlem 1628/9-c. 1682 Amsterdam)
Jacob Isaacksz. van Ruisdael (Haarlem 1628/9-c. 1682 Amsterdam)

Dunes by the sea

Jacob Isaacksz. van Ruisdael (Haarlem 1628/9-c. 1682 Amsterdam)
Dunes by the sea
signed and dated 'J Ruisdael 1648' (lower center)
oil on panel
18 1/8 x 24 in. (46 x 61 cm.)
Richter Oelrich, Bremen, c. 1820.
Bernard Hausmann, Hannover, by 1831.
Provinzialmuseum, Hannover, by 1891.
The Duke of Cumberland, his sale; Lepke, Berlin, 31 March 1925, lot 63. Art market, Düsseldorf, 1948.
Private collection, Cologne.
with Waterman, Amsterdam, 1982, where acquired in 1983 by the Hascoe family.
Verzeichnis der Hausmann'schen Gemälde-Sammlung in Hannover, Braunschweig, 1831, no. 270.
G. Parthey, Deutscher Bildersaal. Verzeichniss der in Deutschland vorhandenen Oelbilder verstorbender Maler aller Schulen, Berlin, 1864, II, p. 461, no. 135.
Provinzialmuseum, Hannover, Catalogue, 1891, no. 474.
C. Hofstede de Groote, A Catalogue Raisonné of the Works of the Most Eminent Dutch Painters of the Seventeenth Century, IV, London, 1908, p. 285, no. 925.
J. Rosenberg, Jacob van Ruisdael, Berlin, 1928, no. 567.
E. J. Walford, Jacob van Ruisdael and the Perception of Landscape, New Haven and London, 1991, p. 64.
S. Slive, Jacob van Ruisdael: A Complete Catalogue of his Paintings, drawings and Etchings, New Haven, 2001, no. 635.
Cologne, Wallraf-Richartz-Museum, Meisterwerke holländischer Landschaftsmalerei des 17. Jahrhunderts, May-June 1954, no. 19.
The Hague, Mauritshuis and Cambridge, Fogg Art Museum, Jacob van Ruisdael, 1 October 1981-3 January 1982 and 18 January-11 April 1982, no. 8 (catalogue entry by S. Slive).
Providence, Rhode Island School of Design, 1983-1987, on loan.
Greenwich, Bruce Museum, Pleasures of Collecting: Part I, Renaissance to Impressionist Masterpieces, 21 September 2002-5 January 2003, pp. 24-25, (catalogue by P. Sutton).
Greenwich, Bruce Museum, Old Master Paintings from the Hascoe Collection, 2 April-29 May 2005, no. 8 (catalogue by P. Sutton).
Los Angeles, Los Angeles County Museum of Art; Philadelphia, Philadelphia Museum of Art; and London, Royal Academy of Arts, Jacob van Ruisdael: Master of Landscape, 26 June-18 September 2005; 23 October 2005-5 February 2006; and 25 February-4 June 2006, no. 9 (catalogue by S. Slive).

If you wish to view the condition report of this lot, please sign in to your account.

Sign in
View condition report

Lot Essay

This beautifully preserved, atmospheric landscape by Jacob van Ruisdael dates to 1648, the same year the artist joined the prestigious Haarlem painters' Guild of Saint Luke. Ruisdael's earliest dated works of just two years before - painted when he was only about seventeen-years- old - reveal an already mature artist whose instinct for compositional harmony, restrained palette and romantic mood pervades the views he made in and around Haarlem in this early period. Ruisdael may have trained with his father, Isaack van Ruisdael (1599-1677) or with his uncle, the renowned painter Salomon van Ruisdael (1602-1670), whose tonal landscapes were no doubt an important influence on the young artist. This work, however, with its "transparent and fine filigree treatment of the trees [and] lighter, more tender palette" reveals the influence of the painter Cornelis Vroom (1591-1661), who is credited with bringing some of these naturalistic techniques to Haarlem landscape painting in the 1630s, almost a decade before (S. Slive, loc. cit.).

The present panel depicts the location visible in another early vista by Ruisdael, dated 1647 (private collection, Westphalia; S. Slive, op. cit., no. 627), with which it shares its uneven dune along a sandy spit of land, verdant trees silhouetted against a windswept sky, and choppy grey-blue waters. Both pictures were probably inspired by the picturesque shoreline of Zuider Zee, southeast of Amsterdam, and are the only surviving painted depictions of this area by the artist. As Peter Sutton observes, these number among Ruisdael's "most beautiful and subtle works and had a lasting influence in the history of art" (loc. cit.). A highly finished drawing of 1648 by Ruisdael, showing The shore of Zuider Zee with three anglers and a view of the ruined church at Muiderberg and Naarden (British Museum, London, inv. 1895.9.15.1299), also relates to the present picture and reveals the same accuracy and precision with which the painter observed the flora and fauna around him. Peter Ashton, who has devoted a serious study to the trees and shrubbery in Ruisdael's paintings, has in fact noted that in the present work "Ruisdael seems to have demonstrated exceptional mastery of his local flora". At lower right, for example, the artist included a depiction of the flowering viburnum lantana, or wayfaring tree. Though it did not escape Ruisdael's discerning eye, this local Haarlem plant was overlooked by the great botanist George Clifford, who compiled his Hortus Cliffortianus in 1737 only a few miles away but did not realize the species was indigenous to the Netherlands (P. Ashton et al., "Jacob van Ruisdael's Trees", Arnoldia, XLII, no. I, Winter 1982, p. 20).

More from Old Master Paintings

View All
View All