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Painting Title Coastal Scene with Crab Catchers
Alternative Title Italian Coast Scene: the Lobster Catchers; Mediterranean Coast Scene with Crab Fishermen
Collection York Art Gallery
Artist Berchem, Nicolaes, the elder (Dutch painter, printmaker, and draftsman, 1620-1683)
Date Earliest about 1658
Date Latest about 1658
Signed yes
Description Figures are depicted on the shore: crab catchers in the centre and a galley by the cliffs to the right. Nicolaes Pieterszoon Berchem was a Dutch painter of pastoral landscapes, populated with mythological or biblical figures, allegories and genre paintings. He is considered a member of the second generation of Dutch Italianate landscape painters, and indeed probably visited Italy in the 1650s. The painting in York is usually considered as dating to about 1658 (according to research by A. Blankert). There is a 17th century copy of YORAG : 778, upright and a little larger (45 x 43.5 cm), in the National Museum in Warsaw (M.Ob.1739 MNW).
Current Accession Number YORAG : 778
Inscription front lr ‘Berchem F.’
Subject landscape; figure; animal (dog)
Measurements 31.5 x 40 cm (estimate)
Material oil on panel (oak)
Acquisition Details Given by F.D. Lycett Green, Esq. through the National Art Collections Fund 1955.
Provenance M. Nogaret, 1780; M. Solirene, 1812; Prince Talleyrand, 1817; purchased from Talleyrand by Mr Buchanan; puchased by Count Purtales; John Smith; purchased by Alexander Baring for 250 guineas before 1834; Lady Carnarvon sale, Christie, Manson & Woods, London, 22 May 1925 (lot 53),purchased by F. Sabin; purchased by Mrs W. J. Holt, 1932; purchased from Duits, London by Lycett Green, 1943.
Principal Exhibitions F.D. Lycett Green Gift, York City Art Gallery, 1955, no. 57; Netherlands 17th Century Italianate Landscape Painters, Centraal Museum, Utrecht, 1965, no. 81; Dutch Seventeenth Century Paintings from Yorkshire Public Collections, City Art Gallery, Leeds, 1982, no. 2; Die Entdeckung der Landschaft, Staatsgalerie Stuttgart, 2005-06, no. 81; Nicolaes Pietersz Berchem - In Light of Italy, Frans Haals Museum, Haarlem 2006 (touring), no. 25.
Publications Smith, J., A Catalogue Raisonné of the Works of the Most Eminent Dutch, Flemish and French Painters: Anthony van Dyck, and David Teniers, vol. 5, London, 1834, cat. 165, p. 56; C. Hofstede de Groot, Beschreibendes und kritisches verzeichnis der werke des hervorragendsten holländischen Maler des XVII. Jahrhunderts, vol. 9, Berlin, 1926, cat. 170; York Art Gallery Catalogue - Catalogue of Paintings, Vol. I: Foreign Schools 1350-1800, City of York Art Gallery, York, 1961, pp. 46-47, pl. 59; Blankert, A., Utrecht, Centraal Museum. Nederlandse ije eeuwse Italianiserende landschapschilders, Utrecht, 1965, cat. 81, pp. 158-159; Blankert, A., Dutch 17th Century Italianate Landscape Painters 2nd edition, Soest, 1978, cat. 81, pp. 158-159; Wright, C. (ed.), Dutch Seventeenth Century Paintings from Yorkshire Public Collections, Leeds, 1982, cat. 2, p. 10; Sutton, P.C., Masters of 17th-century Dutch landscape painting, Boston, 1987, pp. 265-266, fig. 3; Wheelock Jr., A.K., Dutch Paintings of the Seventeenth Century. The Collections of the National Gallery of Art Systematic Catalogue, Washington, 1995, pp. 23-24, fig. 1; Wiemann, E., Die Entdeckung der Landschaft. Ausstellungskatalog Stuttgart, Stuttgart, 2005, cat. 81, p. 216; Nicolaes Berchem: In the Light of Italy. Nicolaas Pietersz Berchem, Frans Halsmuseum, Kunsthaus Zürich, Staatliches Museum Schwerin, Haarlem, 2006, cat no. 25, p. 51, 139; Oil Paintings in Public Ownership. North Yorkshire, London, 2006, p. 239.

Francis Denis Lycett Green (1893-1959) was a member of the wealthy industrial Green family from Wakefield that was among the great philanthropic benefactors of York. He began buying pictures during the 1920s, advised by some of the most famous art historians of the day. By the 1940s, he owned examples from almost every school and period of European Art – a comprehensive collection of over 130 paintings dating back from the early 14th century to the end of the 18th century, representing every important European school of art. In 1952, he offered it to the National Gallery of South Africa, having moved to Cape Town in the hope that the climate would improve his health (which was poor because he was badly injured in the First World War). However when a dispute arose with the Cape Town Gallery, Francis withdrew his pictures in protest and shipped them back to England. The entire collection of 130 pictures was at first on loan to the York Art Gallery and in the spring of 1955 he decided to give it to the Gallery.

Rights Owner York Museums Trust (York Art Gallery)
Author Dr Magdalena Łanuszka



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