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Attributed to Herp, Willem van, I (Flemish painter, ca. 1614-1677) , The Blind Fiddler

Core Record

Title The Blind Fiddler
Collection Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery
Artist Attributed to Herp, Willem van, I (Flemish painter, ca. 1614-1677)
Previously attributed to Dutch School
Date Earliest about 1600
Date Latest about 1700
Description An almost identical version or copy of a painting of the same subject in the Slovak Gallery, Bratislava, is attributed to Willem van Herp (1614-1677). Van Herp was an Antwerp genre painter much influenced by Rubens and David Teniers the Younger. The depiction of the fiddler's vacant stare and unkempt dress pokes fun, rather maliciously, at his blindness.
Current Accession Number 1970P263
Former Accession Number P.26370
Subject everyday life (blind fiddler)
Measurements 59.4 x 47.6 cm cm (estimate)
Material oil on panel
Acquisition Details Bequeathed by Sir Theophilus Biddulph 1969.
Provenance Edward Millington sale, London, 30 April 1690, lot 312 [;]; John Wakefield sale, George Stanley, London, 1 May 1832, lot 22 [;]; Stanley George sale, London, 26 June 1832, lot 137 [;].
Publications Foreign Paintings in Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery, A Summary Catalogue, 1983, no. 51, ill. As Dutch School.
Notes As well as the Bratislava version, another similar version of this composition by Van Herp was sold Sotheby's, 26 April 2001, lot 64. A practically identical version in the Witt Library has the label 'Central Picture Galleries New York'. Another, less similar version was in Bridgewater House (Ellesmere Collection number 180) as A Company of Persons.

Sir Theophilus Biddulph, The Pavilion, Melrose, Scotland died December 1969.

Rights Owner Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery
Author Dr Patricia Smyth



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