In the second half of the 1830s Johannes Bosboom discovered his favorite theme: the church interior. Bosboom's work was thoroughly rooted in the architectural tradition. As a student of the artist Bartholomeus Johannes van Hove (1790-1880) he had collaborated on decors for plays and had acquired a broad knowledge of architecture and architectural styles. This experience expressed itself in the way the artist prepared his composition. He systematically 'built' his church interiors from fore-, middle to background. The composition was enhanced and the sense of depth in the composition increased by his subtle stafage.
Due to the praise he earned in 1836 with the painting of the interior of the St. Jans Church, 's-Hertogenbosch, he decided that this should become his main subject matter. He started his study of church interiors in the province of Brabant and Belgium. In 1917 Bosbooms biographers G.H. Marius and W. Martin included the following quote from the artist concerning his choice: 'De bijval hiermede behaald-de hernieuwde bekroning bij Felix [Meritus], nu voor eene "Kerk met invallend Zonlicht," gevoegd bij mijn bijzondere neiging om indrukken weer te geven, die kergebouwen op mij maakten, leidden er gaandeweg toe dit genre tot mijn "hoofdbaan" te kiezen, in '37 Belgie te gaan bezoeken en herhaaldelijk daar weer te keeren, aangetrokken door den overvloed van studie welke dat Land mij aanbood als door groote voorkomendheid, die ik daar mogt ondervinden.'(G.H. Marius a.o, Johannes Bosboom, The Hague 1917, p.14). At a later date he also worked in the more northern provinces and depicted the interiors of churches such as the St. Bavo in Haarlem, the Noorder Church in Hoorn and the village church of Purmerend.
In the 1840's he was awarded a number of prizes. In 1845 he received a gold medal in Brussels for two works titled "St. Bavo te Haarlem" and "Nieuwe Kerk te Amsterdam". It is possible that the present lot, executed circa 1843, is the latter of these two highly praised works.
Compare to a watercolour, titled 'Au Prêche', recorded in the archives of the RKD, The Hague.
A lithograph of the present lot by C.W. Mieling, The Hague, was published in Kunstkroniek, 1846, p. 28.