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Title Landscape with Figures
Collection Southampton City Art Gallery
Artist Ferg, Franz de Paula (Austrian painter and printmaker, 1689-1740)
Date Earliest about 1710
Date Latest 1740

A prolific artist, Frans de Paul Ferg specialised as a painter of small-scale works of landscape and genre in the manner of the Dutch seventeenth-century masters, particularly Philips Wouwermans (1619-1668). Lacking in originality, but filled with charm, Ferg's pictures found a ready market among collectors who sought after the dwindling supply of Dutch masters that would not be re-released onto the market until the upheavals of the French Revolution. Ferg's principal patrons were the Elector of Saxony at Dresden, and after his move to London in 1718, the Duke of Brunswick.

The two small paintings, Landscape with Figures, in the Southampton collection are painted on copper in a technique so detailed and delicate it borders on miniature painting. The treatment of the trees in both these pictures owes some debt to Jan Wijnants (1631/2-1684), while the Italianate atmosphere of these idealised views, suffused with golden light is derived from scenes by Jan Both (c.1615-1652), and details such as the fountains and the figures resting or conversing in the foreground are indebted to Nicholas Berchem (1620-1683).

Current Accession Number SCAG 193
Subject landscape; figure
Measurements 16.9 x 13.5 cm cm (estimate)
Material oil on metal (copper)
Acquisition Details Bequeathed by the Mayo Porcelli family, 1914.
Provenance In the Mayo family since at least 1864; Richard Mayo, 1864, then by descent.
Publications Southampton Art Gallery, Illustrated Inventory of Paintings, Drawings and Sculpture, Southampton, 1980, p. 30; Wright, C., Renaissance to Impressionism: Masterpieces from Southampton City Art Gallery, London, 1998, pp. 92-93, cat. no. 28, ill. p. 57.
Notes A label on the reverse reads: ‘This picture on copper I give away to my brother Richard, being the companion to the one he has, July 5th 1864, Elizth Mayo'.
Rights Owner Southampton City Art Gallery
Author Francesco Nevola



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