Jacob van Hulsdonck (Antwerpt 1582 - 1647), a still life of wild strawberries and a carnation in a ming bowl, with cherries and redcurrants on a wooden ledge
signed lower left: IVHVLSDONCK. FE (IVH in ligature); oil on copper (affixed to a panel); 28.4 by 36 cm.; 11 1/4 by 14 1/4 in. Estimate 300,000—500,000 GBP. Sold 361,250 GBP
PROVENANCE: Anonymous sale ('The Property of a Lady'), London, Christie's, 25 November 1966, lot 44, for 4000 Guineas to Koetser;
With Leonard Koetser, London, 1967;
With Julia Kraus, Paris;
Private collection, Germany, 1983;
Robert H. Smith, Washington;
With Bob Haboldt, New York, 1995;
Anonymous sale ('The Property of a Private Collector'), London, Sotheby's, 14 December 2000, lot 15, where bought by the present owner.
EXHIBITED: London, Leonard Koetser, Spring 1967, no. 3, reproduced;
Amsterdam, P. de Boer, 22 April - 31 May 1983;
Braunschweig, Herzog Anton-Ulrich-Museum, A Fruitful Past, 15 June - 31 July 1983, no. 27;
New York, Bob P. Haboldt, Fifty Paintings by Old Masters, 1995, no. 28.
LITERATURE AND REFERENCES: T.H. Crombie, 'Autumn Offerings', in Apollo, vol. lxxviii, no. 20, October 1963, p. 305, reproduced;
Christie's Review of the Season, 1966-7, p. 30, reproduced;
'The Leonard Koetser Spring Exhibition', in The Connoisseur, no. 164, 1967, p. 253, reproduced fig. 3;
S. Segal, in A Fruitful Past, exhibition catalogue, Amsterdam 1983, pp. 65, 115, cat. no. 27;
S. Segal, Flowers and Nature, The Hague 1990, p. 84, cat. no. 31, reproduced.
NOTE: Though born in Antwerp, Hulsdonck seems to have spent his youth in Middelburg, where the exiled Flemish Protestants fleeing the Spanish Terror after 1585 included many artists as well as patrons. This, and the close trading links with Dutch cities upstream such as Dordrecht, provided there a fertile breeding ground for artistic talent. Hulsdonck certainly knew Ambrosius Bosschaert the Elder. The two artists' work show great affinity, but Bosschaert, who was nearly ten years older than Hulsdonck, probably influenced the younger artist. Both were influenced by Jan Brueghel the Elder, but after Hulsdonck's return to Antwerp in 1608, his work shows more affinity with Osias Beert, who had been enrolled in the Guild in 1602 (but who never dated a picture), and who therefore probably influenced Hulsdonck, rather than vice versa.
This understated picture is one of Hulsdonck's most elegant compositions. His simplest compositions tend to be his most successful - the same is true of his still lifes of flowers in vases.
Sotheby's. Old Master Paintings Evening Sale.| 08 Jul 09. London www.sothebys.com
Some others still life from Jacob van Hulsdonck in a Ming bowl
Jacob van Hulsdonck, Still Life with Fruit, oil on panel, 20 by 31.4 cm. Estimate 100,000—150,000 USD. Sold 122,500 USD Sotheby's New York, Important Old Master Paintings, Including European Works of Art, 29 Jan 09 photo courtesy Sotheby"s