Apr 19, 2018
Michele Marieschi, Claudio Francesco Beaumont, Francesco Ii Bassano, Anonymous, French School, Pompeo Girolamo Batoni, Giovanni Battista Piranesi, Francesco Zuccarelli, Simon Mathurin Lantara, Giovanni Battista Tiepolo,
Some works of Jan Mabuse GossaertExtracted between 120 works in the catalog of Arcadja
Other WORKS AT AUCTION
Other WORKS AT AUCTION
Other WORKS AT AUCTION
MAUBEUGE (?) CIRCA 1478 - 1532 ANTWERP (?)
THE VIRGIN AND CHILD
oil on oak panel
38.9 by 26.6 cm.; 15 3/8 by 10 1/2 in.
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Private collection, Bruges;
Richard von Kaufmann (circa 1850–1908), Berlin, by whom acquired in 1902;
By inheritance to his widow;
The Richard von Kaufmann sale, Berlin, Paul Cassirer, 4ff December 1917, lot 92, as painted circa 1520, in its original frame;
Eduard Simon (1864–1929), Berlin;
His sale, Berlin, Cassirer & Helbing, 10–11 October 1929, lot 24;
Dr. Wolfgang Huck, Berlin, by 1930, and probably acquired at the Simon sale;
Thence by descent to the present owner.
Berlin, Akademie der Künste, Ausstellung von Werken alter Kunst: Aus dem Privatbesitz von Mitgliedern des Kaiser Friedrich-Museums-Vereins, 1914, no. 49;
Rotterdam, Museum Boymans, Jeroen Bosch. Van Geertgen tot Scorel. Noord-nederlandsche primitieven, 10 July – 15 October 1936, no. 107;
London, National Gallery, on loan from 1993 to December 2012 (inv. L650);
London, National Gallery, Jan Gossaert\’\’\’\’s Renaissance, 23 February – 30 May 2011, no. 13.
M.J. Friedländer, 'De Verzameling von Kaufmann te Berlijn,\’\’\’\’ in Onze kunst, vol. 5, no. 2, 1906, p. 34;
E. Weisz, Jan Gossart gen. Mabuse, sein Leven und seine Werke…, Parchim in M. 1913, p. 118, reproduced plate XII, no. 33 (originally presented as Doctoral Diss., 1912);
M.J. Friedländer, Die altniederländische Malerei, vol. VIII, Berlin & Leiden 1930, p. 156, no. 30, reproduced plate XXVIII;
G. von der Osten, in M. Meiss (ed.), 'Studien zu Jan Gossaert,\’\’\’\’ in De artibus opuscula XL, Essays in Honor of Erwin Panofsky, New York 1961, vol. I, pp. 454, 469;
S. Herzog, Jan Gossart called Mabuse (ca. 1478–1532): A Study of His Chronology with a Catalogue of His Works, Doctoral Diss., Bryn Mawr 1968, pp. 286–87, no. 38, as datable circa 1525–30;
M.J. Friedländer, Early Netherlandish Painting, vol. VIII, Leiden 1972, p. 94, no. 30, reproduced plate 32;
National Gallery Report, London 1994, pp. 20–21;
M. Wolff, in M. Wolff (ed.), Northern European and Spanish Paintings before 1600 in the Art Institute of Chicago: A Catalogue of the Collection, New Haven & London 2008, p. 231;
L. Campbell, in M.W. Ainsworth (ed.), Man, Myth, and Sensual Pleasure. Jan Gossart\’\’\’\’s Renaissance, New Haven & London 2010, pp. 164–66, no. 13, reproduced p. 165, as datable circa 1520.
The exhibition devoted to Jan Gossaert at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and the National Gallery in London in 2010–11, where between the two venues a substantial proportion of his surviving works was displayed together, made a remarkable impression on the visitor, allowing a wider public to appreciate to the full the extraordinary genius of this great Renaissance artist. More specifically, it reminded us that Gossaert was the first Netherlandish painter fully to embrace Italian Renaissance modes of depiction.
This point, eloquently made in the exhibition and perhaps even more so in the accompanying catalogue raisonné, had been noticed before, in the artist\’\’\’\’s own century, by Lodovico Guicciardini and Giorgio Vasari in the 1560s, and shortly after by Karel van Mander.
As well as scripting a wholly new pictorial mode for the Netherlands, Gossaert was a strikingly original artist, whose paintings and drawings are instantly recognisable.
The present beautifully preserved Madonna and Child, which hung in the National Gallery in London on loan since 1993, was included in the landmark Jan Gossaert exhibition there, where it was displayed in the company of other depictions of the Madonna and Child from the 1520s and '30s, one of only two such remaining in private hands.
Max Friedländer, the first scholar to write about the picture, and Lorne Campbell, the most recent, date it circa 1520.
Sadja Herzog dated it to the second half of the 1520s, but the consensus among latter-day scholars is for the earlier dating.
Campbell compares it with the Carondelet Diptych, of which the right hand panel depicts the Madonna and Child, which is dated 1517 (fig. 3).
The facial type of the Virgin in both works is noticeably similar, while the figure of the Christ Child is different.
Gossaert was in Italy only once, probably for little more than a few months in 1509, but his visit there as part of the entourage of Philip of Burgundy on his delegation to Pope Julius II in Rome enabled him to study and draw the monuments of Antiquity, perhaps the first Northern artist to do so, as well as to familiarise himself with the achievements of the contemporary artists of the High Renaissance. Given the brevity of his stay in Rome, his activity must have been febrile.
He was fortunate that his humanist patron Philip of Burgundy was intensely interested in what they both saw. As Philip\’\’\’\’s biographer Gerard Geldenhouwer wrote in 1529, 'Nothing pleased him more when he was in Rome than those sacred monuments of antiquity which he commissioned from the distinguished artist Jan Gossart of Maubeuge to depict for him'.
A number of drawings done by Gossaert in Rome survive. His Roman experience was seminal in forming his own classicizing style, and was to change the course of art in the Netherlands. It was not however his only exposure to High Renaissance art. From 1506 onwards, Michelangelo\’\’\’\’s Bruges Madonna was in the Onze-Lieve Vrouwekerk in Bruges, and Gossaert must have seen it there (see fig. 1). As Lorne Campbell noted, the present Virgin and the Christ-Child, though not the overall composition, bear some resemblance to their counterparts in Michelangelo\’\’\’\’s sculpture, especially in the countenance of the Madonna and the contrapposto of the Christ Child, which Gossaert has further exaggerated.
Elsewhere, Gossaert\’\’\’\’s experience of Italian Renaissance sculpture was likely to have been as important an influence on him as painting, both compositionally, and in the remarkable extent to which he used faux-carved settings for his paintings, both architectural and sculptural.
Gossaert painted the Virgin and Child sufficiently often that this must have been a subject that had a particular resonance for the artist, as well as a particular appeal for his patrons. They are typically small-scale works on panels generally less than 50 by 35 cms., some with arched tops, and the figures generally fill the picture plane in a way that was unusual among Netherlandish artists.
Although the dating of individual works is still a matter of debate, there is a measurable development over the course of the last decade or so of Gossaert\’\’\’\’s life, which is the span of their creation. In earlier works such as this one, and the work also of circa 1520 in the Mauritshuis, The Hague, and the one of circa 1522 in the Landesmuseum, Münster, the figures are set before a plain background, with traces of marbling like the present work.
In the Mauritshuis picture the Christ Child appears somewhat lively, as in the present picture, and the Virgin is also resting Him on a carpeted table-top set at an angle. In later treatments of the subject, such as the work in the Prado, Madrid, of circa 1527, and one in a private collection of circa 1530, Gossaert sets the Virgin and Child before elaborate architectural settings, using both classical and high gothic styles, while in a work of the second half of the 1520s in Berlin, Gemäldegalerie, Gossaert places them before a trompe l\’\’\’\’œil frame.
In the last of the sequence, a work dated 1531 in Cleveland, Gossaert placed the Virgin and Child before a landscape.
There is no doubt that in these works Gossaert was consciously reinterpreting the Italian Renaissance tradition of depicting the Madonna and Child. It is however the earlier pictures in the sequence of works, such as the present example, that are the most Italianate. The later ones evolve towards a highly distinctive but more Northern pictorial mode: the Cleveland work – the last of them all – was clearly influenced by Albrecht Dürer in the pose of the Virgin and by contemporary artists in The Netherlands such as Joachim Patinir and his followers in the choice of a landscape background and its manner of depiction.
Although closely associated with Philip of Burgundy, who helped him procure commissions, Gossaert was not continuously employed as a Court Painter in the official sense, and worked as an independent artist. Although based in Middelburg, he travelled often to execute commissions, and seems not to have operated with an established workshop. On a modern map, Middelburg appears relatively isolated, on the tip of the most remote of the islands of Zeeland, linked to the rest of the Netherlands only by modern causeways and bridges carrying roads and railways. When in the 16
centuries sea routes were swifter and more reliable than overland travel across waterlogged and boggy country divided by rivers and undrained swamps, its isolation was less of a reality, and it was easily reached from Antwerp, Ghent and Bruges, where Gerard David, with whose works Gossaert seems to have been familiar, lived, and where Gossaert himself may have been active in the second decade of the 16
century. From 1517 onwards, Gossaert seems to have spent some time, probably intermittently, at Philip of Burgundy\’\’\’\’s residence at Wijk bij Duurstede, near Utrecht, where Philip had been elected bishop. He also seems to have spent time at Mechelen (Malines), and was summoned there in 1523 by Margaret of Austria. Thus, even assuming a dating for the present work of circa 1520, it is not possible to suggest with any degree of confidence where it was painted. Following Philip of Burgundy\’\’\’\’s death in 1524, Gossaert went to work for Philip\’\’\’\’s great-nephew Adolf of Burgundy, Admiral of Zeeland at Veere in Zeeland, not far from Middelburg, but the present work is likely to be earlier than that.
As Lorne Campbell noted, this picture may well have formed the left wing of a diptych.
The Christ Child is looking out of the picture plane to the viewer\’\’\’\’s right, perhaps regarding a donor on the right wing. No such wing has been identified with certainty, by Von der Osten, followed by Martha Wolff, suggested that it may have been the Portrait of a Monk in the Louvre, Paris (fig. 2).
The Louvre panel is dated 1526, a little later than the current scholarly consensus for the present work, was painted in an engaged frame, and is slightly smaller than the present picture. Moreover, there is a noticeable lack of compositional synergy between the two works.
The panel, ground and paint layers
The support is a Baltic oak panel formed of two boards: one comprising most of the panel, and a narrower one barely 1.5 cm. wide at the left.
This unusual structure suggests that the panel was probably originally larger, but if it was cut down, this was done before the painting was begun, since the painted surface ends before the present edges. Although a frame described as original is mentioned in the Von Kaufmann sale catalogue, the current frame is not original. There is no evidence to suggest that the painting was executed in an engaged frame. In common with several other of Gossaert\’\’\’\’s Madonnas, the present panel has very little under-drawing. Over the chalk ground layer the priming of the panel is pinkish in tone, and comprises lead white with a little red lead. Red lead is also found in the tablecloth, mixed with red lake, vermilion and lead white. Fluorite is found in the upper layer of the background, mixed with the same pigments and black. The blue used in the Virgin\’\’\’\’s robe is ultramarine of high quality and expense.
Note on Provenance
This painting is first recorded in an unidentified private collection in Bruges, before it was acquired at the very beginning of the 20
century by Richard von Kaufmann. The turn of the 20
century coincided with a rapid increase in interest in and the collecting of the work of the Flemish Primitives, among whose number Gossaert would have been included, despite his strong and ground-breaking links with Italian Renaissance art and his reflections of Classical antiquity. This revival of interest in late medieval and Renaissance art in the lands largely contained within the borders of the recently founded Kingdom of Belgium was marked by several influential exhibitions, including the landmark Les Primitifs Flamands in Bruges in 1902.
Thereafter the painting was in three succeeding distinguished Berlin collections. Richard von Kaufmann had started collecting before he moved from Aachen to Berlin in 1883, but thereafter he focussed on Italian Primitives and Renaissance painting, Flemish Primitives, and Early German paintings. He collected very few paintings made after the early 16
century, and to judge from the two-volume sale catalogue, he was extremely selective, since the paintings included in it are of an extraordinarily high level of quality. The painting then entered the collection of the second Berlin collector, Eduard Simon, an art collector and philanthropist who headed the family textile firm Gebrüder Simon, and was cousin of James Simon, another well-known collector. Eduard Simon concentrated on two areas of collecting: Renaissance painting and sculpture from both sides of the Alps, and French, Italian and English 18
-century painting. Like Von Kaufmann, Simon bought many works on the advice of Wilhelm von Bode, including the Porto detached frescoes by Tiepolo sold in these Rooms on 3 July 2013, lot 42. The present work by Gossaert would have been displayed in the villa that Simon had built in 1902 in Viktoriastrasse alongside Italian Renaissance masterpieces including a Botticelli Madonna and Child, and portraits by Bronzino and Bugiardini, and sculptures by Lorenzo Ghiberti and Andrea Riccio. Grateful for Von Bode\’\’\’\’s advice, Simon donated many works to the Berlin museums, and the remainder of his collection was dispersed at auction following his sudden death in 1929. At the sale in 1929, or very soon after, the Gossaert was acquired by the Berlin (and later Munich) newspaper proprietor and publisher Wolfgang Huck (1889–1967), who had started collecting earlier in the decade. Like his father, Huck was intensely interested in theatre and music as well as art, and both notably backed Max Reinhardt. As a collector he was particularly interested in Early Netherlandish painting, owning for example the Joos van Cleve Virgin and Child with a Pear now in the Städel, Frankfurt, as well as the present work, which remains in the possession of a descendant.
Other WORKS AT AUCTION
Cain Killing Abel.
Woodcut, circa 1520. 301x225 mm; 11 7/8x8 7/8 inches. With thread margins or trimmed on the border line, with the border line preserved all around. A very good impression of this extremely scarce, early woodcut.
We have found only 3 other Mabuse woodcuts at auction in the past 25 years and no other impressions of this subject. Hollstein 4.
Other WORKS AT AUCTION
- JAN GOSSAERT, kallad MABUSE
hans efterföljare, flamländsk skola, omkring 1650
Madonna med barnet
Olja på kopparplåt, 29 x 22,5 cm.
Follower of. Oil on copperplate.
EXPERTIS: Cabinet Turquin, Stéphane Pinta, Paris
Estimate: SEK 10 000-12 000
(EUR 910-1 100)
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LA BIOGRAFIA DI Jan Mabuse Gossaert
MABUSE Jan Gossaert , pittore fiammingo, è nato a Maubeuge nel 1478 ed è morto a Middelburg nel 1532.
Nel 1508 fu a Roma al seguito di Filippo di Borgogna nel castello di Suytburg e in quello di Utrecht.
Ricevette numerose commissioni da Cristiano II di Danimarca e lavorò per la corte di Malines.
Dopo le sue prime opere in cui è visibile la tradizione di David, dipinse numerosi soggetti mitologici ricchi di decorazioni classiche.
Le sue opere "San Luca dipinge la Vergine" e "Nettuno e Anfitrite" hanno avuto un'influenza fondamentale nello sviluppo della pittura fiamminga.
Per quanto riguarda i ritratti l'artista segue la tradizione fiamminga della definizione analitica creando magnifici capolavori tra cui "Jan Carondelet" e "Vecchi cognugi".