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Jan van Goyen (1595 – 1656)
Riverbank with cottages and a horse-drawn wagon.
A page from Van Goyen’s sketchbook of 1650 – 1651, a record of his trip along the Rhine and to Amsterdam and Haarlem in those years.
Black chalk and grey wash. Inscribed: 193
On paper, 97 x 157 mm.
Johnson Neale (bought on the Continent); T. Mark Hovell, London; sale, Sotheby’s, 3 July 1918, no. 124; P. & D. Colnaghi & Co., A.W.M. Mensing, sale Amsterdam, 27 April 1937, no. 218; Hirschmann; A. Meyer, The Hague and New York; Dr. Karl Lilienfeld, New York; C.F. Louis de Wild, New York; Sotheby Mak van Waay veiling 319, 11-16 4342C, 15 February 1980 lot # 85; private collection.
Verslagen omtrent’s Rijks Verzamelingen van Geschiedenis der Kunst, XVIII, 1895-96, p. 64-66; C. Dogson, A Dutch Sketchbook of 1650, Burlington Magazine, XXXII (1918), p. 234-240; ibid., XXXIII (1918), p. 112; ibid., LXVI (1935), p. 284; Hans-Ulrich Beck, Jan van Goyens Handzeichnungen als Vorzeichnungen, Oud-Holland, LXXII, 1957, p. 241-250; F. Gorissen, Conspectus Cliviae, Kleve, 1964, p. 84-86; Hans-Ulrich Beck, Jan van Goyen am Dreibruch von Houtewael (1651), Oud-Holland, LXXXI, 1966, p. 20-33; Hans-Ulrich Beck, Ein Skizzenbuch von Jan van Goyen, The Hague, 1966; H. Dattenberg, Niederheinansichten holländischer Künstler, Düsseldorf, 1967, p. 152 ff; Hans-Ulrich Beck, Jan van Goyen Katalog der Handzeichnungen, Amsterdam, 1972, p. 285 no. 847.
Several of Jan van Goyens sketchbooks are known. He made them during the various journeys he undertook. In the summer of 1650 the then 54-year-old Jan van Goyen travelled via Arnhem and Kleve along the Rhine. In the following year he visited Haarlem and Amsterdam. On the way he made numerous sketches in his characteristic style, which he later incorporated into his paintings.
Van Goyen developed a style of painting that permitted him to work fast. His wet-in-wet oil technique reduced the production time and thus he was able to increase his output, thus beating his competition. It is always interesting to see how the distinct handwriting of his sketches (and under-drawings) remained intact when translated into oil paint. Its unaffected directness adds to the authenticity and power of this artist.
Our drawing is sheet number 193 (Beck # 847/193) of his sketchbook. It was the American art dealer Lilienfeld who in 1957 took it apart and sold the drawings separately. But prior to that date sheets already had been cut out of the album, and the exact size of the original sketchbook remains unclear.