Jan van Kessel III (Amsterdam 1641-1680)
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Jan van Kessel III (Amsterdam 1641-1680)

A wooded river landscape with a stone bridge, a church beyond

Jan van Kessel III (Amsterdam 1641-1680)
A wooded river landscape with a stone bridge, a church beyond
oil on canvas
20 x 27 in. (50.8 x 68.6 cm.)
in an enlarged mid-18th Century French frame
George Morant; sale, Phillips, London, 19 May 1832, lot 47, as Jacob Ruisdael, 'A Landscape with a Bridge -- A chateau is placed on the banks of a river, by the side of which figures are passing; and on the opposite bank a clump of trees and buildings; -- exhibits the free and characteristic pencil of this esteemed master' [the attribution to Ruisdael had been manually changed by John Smith in his copy of the catalogue to 'Ronbout' [Rombouts]) (£25.4/- to Mr. Muskett).
Joseph Salusbury Muskett, Intwood Hall, near Norwich, and by descent to his grandson
Colonel Clement Unthank, Intwood Hall, Norfolk; sale, Robinson and Fisher, London, 27 May 1897, lot 164, as Jacob van Ruisdael (£184 to Mainwaring).
The Hon. Frederick Massey-Mainwaring, M.P., D.L.; sale, Robinson and Fisher, London, 6-10 June 1898, lot 569, as Jacob van Ruisdael (to Sedelmeyer).
with Charles Sedelmeyer, Paris, Cent tableaux de Maîtres anciens, v, 1899, p. 30, no. 22, as Meindert Hobbema.
Anon. Sale, Paris, 12 June 1919 (16,100 francs), as Meindert Hobbema.
Sénateur Jean Dupuy; (+) sale, Lair-Dubreuil, Paris, 18 June 1920, lot 22, as Meindert Hobbema.
Dr. H. Gurlitt, Hamburg, from whom purchased by the
Wallraf-Richartz-Museum, Cologne, 1941, inv. no. 2631, as Hobbema (125,000 marks), and by whom restituted to the present owners this year.
C. Hofstede de Groot, A Catalogue Raisonné, etc., IV, London, 1912, p. 248, no. 787, as Jacob Ruisdael; p. 360, no. 22, as Meindert Hobbema, erroneously described as on panel.
J. Rosenberg, Jacob van Ruisdael, Berlin, 1928, no. 476*, unseen, as Jacob Ruisdael.
G. Brouilhet, Meindert Hobbema, Paris, 1938, p. 387, no. 77, illustrated p. 140, 'Le Pont de Pierre'.
Wallraf-Richartz-Museum, Cologne, Catalogue, 1965, p. 71, no. 2631, as Meindert Hobbema.
Wallraf-Richartz-Museum, Cologne, Catalogue, 1967, p. 54, no. 2631, as Style of Hobbema.
A.W. Moore, Dutch and Flemish Painting in Norfolk, in conjunction with the commemorative William and Mary Tercentenary exhibition, Norwich, Castle Museum, 10 September-20 November 1988, pp. 38-9, 74 (note 74) and 118 (note 15), under no. 65.
A.I. Davies, Jan van Kessel, Ghent, 1992, p. 181, no. 95, illustrated.
Special notice

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Lot Essay

Thought to by Ruisdael until Sedelmeyer attributed it to Hobbema in 1899, this picture was unknowingly listed under both artists by Hofstede de Groot (loc. cit., nos. 787 and 22). The picture was then included in Rosenberg's Ruisdael catalogue (loc. cit.) and accepted as a Hobbema (loc. cit.) by Broulhiet. The Wallraf-Richartz-Museum acquired the painting in 1941 as a Hobbema but then downgraded the picture to 'manner of Hobbema' in 1967.

The attribution to Van Kessel was first proposed by Alice Davies in her 1992 monograph on the artist (loc. cit.). She dates the work to the mid-1660s, a period when Van Kessel produced a number of works with conspicuous Hobemma-like trees, comparing it with three pictures dated 1664 (ibid., nos, 42, 79 and 102). She also notes that the building to the right of the picture recurs in another work by Van Kessel, formerly with Hallsborough, London (her no. 97).

We are grateful to Marijke de Kinkelder of the RKD for endorsing the attribution to Van Kessel.

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