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Title An Old Woman and a Boy by Candlelight
Collection Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery
Artist Stom, Matthias (Dutch painter, ca.1600-after 1650)
Date Earliest about 1620
Date Latest about 1650
Description Matthias Stom (or Stomer) was a Dutch painter from Utrecht who shows the influence of Caravaggio whose works he studied in Italy. Like many Dutch artists, he was drawn to the immediacy of Caravaggio's new, realistic style of painting, his use of peasant types and his dramatic light effects. Here, he follows a favourite device of the Dutch followers of Caravaggio in showing a candle held behind the hand making the flesh of the fingers, a glowing, nearly transparent, red.

The contrast of youth and age is a traditional motif in Netherlandish painting from the fifteenth century onwards. It suggested the vanity of human life and the brevity of youth.

Current Accession Number 1958P1
Former Accession Number P.158
Subject interior (candlelight scene);allegory (youth and age)
Measurements 58.4 x 71.1 cm cm (estimate)
Material oil on panel
Acquisition Details Purchased from Matthieson Fine Art Ltd 1958.
Provenance Franciscus Becker, Hildesheim; Willy Streit, Hamburg, 1935.
Principal Exhibitions Images of a Golden Age, Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery, 1989, cat. no. 9; Matthias Stom: Isaac Blessing Jacob, 29 Oct 1999 - 16 Jan 2000
Publications Pauwels, H., 'De Schilder Matthias Stomer', Gentse Bijdragen Tot de Kunstgeschiedenis, vol. 14, 1953, pp. 174-187; Emporium, vol. 129, 1959, p. 137; Connoisseur, June 1958, p. 51; Wright, C., Images of a Golden Age, 1989; Nicholson, B., The International Caravaggesque Movement, 1979, p. 96; Catalogue of Paintings in Birmingham City Museum and Art Gallery, 1960; Foreign Paintings in Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery, A Summary Catalogue, 1983, no. 136.
Notes Inscribed on back,'Nro. 75 Von Honthorst orig: Comparavit Abbatiae S. Michin Hildesh. R. P. Franciscus Becker Cellerarius Ibidem O.P.F.'
Rights Owner Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery
Author Dr Patricia Smyth



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