Dulwich Picture Gallery II


Philips Wouwerman DPG182, DPG92

DPG182 – Peasants in the Fields: Hay Harvest

c. 1655; oak panel, 41.3 x 35.9 cm
Monogrammed bottom left: PHILS W (PHILS in monogram)

?J. van Bergen van der Gryp et al. sale, Soeterwoude, 25 June 1784 (Lugt 3750), pp. 23–4, lot 134; bt Fouquet, ƒ1,225;1 Insurance 1804, no. 83 (‘A Cart & Figures in a Landscape Ditto [i.e. Wouwerman] £600’; Bourgeois Bequest, 1811; Britton 1813, p. 23, no. 226 (‘Drawing Room / no. 14, Horses & carts on a bank - P[anel] Wouvermans’; 2'2" x 2").

Cat. 1817, p. 8, no. 130 (‘Second room – West Side; A Landscape, with Horses, Carts, and Figures; Wouvermans’); Haydon 1817, p. 382, no. 130;2 Cat. 1820, p. 8, no. 130; Patmore 1824a, p. 181;3 Hazlitt 1824, pp. 34–5;4 Smith 1829–42, i (1829), p. 286, no. 311;5 Cat. 1830, p. 11, no. 228; Penny Magazine 1841d;6 Hazlitt 1843, pp. 27–8, no. 53;7 Jameson 1842, p. 480, no. 228;8 Waagen 1854, ii, p. 343, no. 4;9 Denning 1858, no. 228 (‘Said to have come from Lord Cawdor’s Collection’); Sparkes 1876, pp. 213–14, no. 228 (‘exquisitely-painted picture’); Richter & Sparkes 1880, pp. 190–91, no. 228 (‘Bright in colouring; of great finish’); Richter & Sparkes 1892 and 1905, p. 48, no. 182; Masterpieces Wouwerman 1907, p. 51 (fig.); HdG, ii, 1908, pp. 559–60, no. 941 (Engl. edn 1909, pp. 565–6); Cook 1914, pp. 116–17, no. 182; Cook 1926, pp. 109–10, no. 182; Cat. 1953, p. 44; Wright 1976, p. 224; Murray 1980a, pp. 141–2; Murray 1980b, p. 31; White 1982, p. 154, under no. 248; Wright 1989, p. 268; Beresford 1998, pp. 268–9; Schumacher 2006, i, p. 344, A439, ii, pl. 410; Cornelis & Schapelhouman 2016, p. 102, fig. 122; Jonker & Bergvelt 2016, pp. 301, 307; RKD no. 225964: https://rkd.nl/en/explore/images/225964 (May 18, 2018).

London 1952–3, p. 58, no. 289; Williamsburg/Fresno/Pittsburgh/Oklahoma 2008–10, pp. 106–7, no. 39 (I. A. C. Dejardin).

Oak panel with vertical grain. The verso edges are bevelled and there are four wax seals on the back. The largest of the seals reads ‘BOURGEOIS DES CIEUX PAR LA FOI’; another shows a horse and rider, surmounted by the same; the lowest seal has a Roman-style head on it; the fourth is blank. The paint film is in very good condition. Some vertical retouchings in the sky, which may be related to the panel grain, have blanched and become visible. Previous recorded treatment: 1952–3, Dr Hell.

1) Philips Wouwerman, The Grain Harvest, panel, 31.4 x32.5 cm. Schloß Wilhelmshöhe, Kassel, GK 355.10
2) Jean Moyreau after Philips Wouwerman, Le Port au Foin (The Hay Port), inscriptions, etching, 370 x 480 mm; Moyreau 1737–62, no. 58. BM, London, 1847,0305.99.11
3a) Johannes Lingelbach, Country People at the Hay Harvest, signed J: Lingelbach, panel, 41.3 x 53.4 cm. Schloß Wilhelmshöhe, Kassel, GK 364.12
3b) Johannes Lingelbach, Falconers on a Path with Harvesters loading Hay on a Wagon nearby, a Valley beyond, at Dusk, signed and dated Jlingelbach/1659, canvas, 51.5 x 43.6 cm. Present whereabouts unknown (Salomon Lilian, Dutch Old Master Paintings, Amsterdam, 2010) [1].13
4a) Copy: on board. R. Reynolds collection, Carnforth, Lancs.14
4b) Copy: Ralph Cockburn, Landscape, with Haymakers, c. 1816–20, aquatint, 407 x 350 mm (Cockburn 1830, no. 50). DPG [2].15
4c) Copy (same direction): John Jackson, Landscape with Cattle and Figures – Wouvermans, wood engraving, Penny Magazine 1841d, p. 289.

Lent to the Royal Academy to be copied in 1838, 1848 and 1921.

Wouwerman’s interest in the everyday characters of this little scene recalls the early influence of Van Laer. However, Frederik Duparc pointed out that the beautiful silver greys balanced by warm pinks are those of his later work in the second half of the 1650s;16 Schumacher agreed, placing it ‘Around or shortly after 1655’.

Wouwerman returned again and again to scenes of common people gleaning a living among the sandhills of the northern Netherlands, depicting hay carts singly (Related works, no. 1) or in combination with a ship (Related works, no. 2), or as here one above the other, with the horses facing in opposite directions. It seems that Wouwerman influenced Johannes Lingelbach (1622–74) with this motif (Related works, nos 3a, 3b) [2].

Hofstede de Groot suggested that DPG182 is first documented in a sale at Zoeterwoude in 1784; the description and dimensions are indeed very similar, but Wouwerman played many variations on his motifs, so one cannot be completely sure of the identification. The picture first definitely appears in the collection of Desenfans, in 1804, before passing to Bourgeois in 1807.

Philips Wouwerman
Peasants in the Fields; Hay Harvest, c. 1655 or shortly after
panel (oak), oil paint 41,3 x 35,9 cm
lower left : PHiLS w (PHILS in monogram)
Dulwich (London), Dulwich Picture Gallery, inv./cat.nr. DPG182

Johannes Lingelbach
Falconers on a path with harvesters loading hay onto a wagon nearby, a valley beyond, at dusk, 1659 dated
canvas, oil paint 51,5 x 43,6 cm
lower center : Jlingelbach/1659
Amsterdam/Genève, Salomon Lilian Old Master Paintings, inv./cat.nr. cat.no. 9

Ralph Cockburn after Philips Wouwerman
Landscape, with Haymakers, 1816-1820
paper, aquatint 407 x 350 mm
Dulwich (London), Dulwich Picture Gallery

DPG92 – Courtyard with a Farrier shoeing a Horse

c. 1655, canvas, 46.3 x 55.6 cm
Monogrammed bottom right: PHILS W (PHILS as monogram)

Antoine-Joseph Dézalier d’Argenville (1680–1765), Paris, by 1737 (see Moyreau print, Related works, no. 1; Fig.); his sale, Paris (Rémy), 3 March 1766 (Lugt 1509), lot 25; bt Du Trouy, 801 livres;17 J. B. Horion sale, Brussels, 11 Sept. 1788 (Lugt 4346), p. 14, lot 71; bt Walkiers for ƒ1,820;18 Evening Mail inventory, 1790–91 (Wouverman’s Room: ‘Wouvermans – A farrier’s shop’);19 undated list of ‘Pictures to be Sold’ (early 1790s), no. 241 (Berchem Room: ‘Wouvermans – the farrier shop’ 40 gn.); Desenfans sale, Skinner and Dyke, London, 18 March 1802 (Lugt 6380), lot 189 (‘A Farrier’s Shop with Horses, Cattle & Figures’; paired with another Wouwerman picture);20 Bourgeois Bequest, 1811; Britton 1813, p. 25, no. 252 (‘Small Drawing Room / no. 5, Ruins, figures, & Sheep - C[anvas] - Wouvermans’; 2'2" x 2'6").

Descamps 1753–63, ii (1754), p. 292; Cat. 1817, p. 8, no. 131 (‘SECOND ROOM – West Side; Old buildings, a Farrier shoeing a Horse; Wouvermans’); Haydon 1817, p. 382, no. 131;21 Cat. 1820, p. 8, no. 131; Patmore 1824b, pp. 43–4, no. 120;22 Smith 1829–42, i (1829), p. 220, no. 69;23 Cat. 1830, p. 8, no. 137; Jameson 1842, ii, p. 464, no. 137; Bentley’s 1851, p. 347;24 not Waagen 1854, ii, p. 343, no. 5;25 Denning 1858 and 1859, no. 137;26 Sparkes 1876, p. 212, no. 137;27 Richter & Sparkes 1880, p. 191, no. 137 (‘An excellent work of the master’s best time’); Richter & Sparkes 1892 and 1905, pp. 23–4, no. 92; HdG, ii, 1908, p. 293, no. 131 (Engl. edn 1909, p. 297); Cook 1914, p. 54, no. 92; Cook 1926, p. 52, no. 92; Wilenski 1929, p. 177 (fig. 72); Cat. 1953, p. 44; Wilenski 1955, pp. 129, 130, pl. 72; Wright 1976, p. 224; Murray 1980a, p. 141; Murray 1980b, p. 31; Atwater 1989, iv, p. 1554, under no. 2008; Beresford 1998, p. 267; Schumacher 2006, i, pp. 69, 181, A29, ii, pl. 28; Jonker & Bergvelt 2016, pp. 302–3, 307; RKD, no. 289545: https://rkd.nl/en/explore/images/289545 (May 18, 2018).

?London 1815, p. 17, no. 71 (‘Landscape, with cattle and horses’; this could also be DPG97);28 London 1952–3, p. 59, no. 294; Houston/Louisville 1999–2000, pp. 196–7, no. 69 (D. Shawe-Taylor).

Plain-weave linen canvas consisting of several pieces. Glue-paste lined. The lining glue is thick and the canvases are not well adhered. The paint surface is in fairly poor condition: the darks are thinly painted and there is a pale craquelure over the paint surface, which in places is raised and sharp, and there is some cupping of the surface. The building and foreground bear some fine drying cracks. There is relatively little retouching on this image. There are no previous recorded treatments for this painting.

1) (In reverse) Jean Moyreau after Philips Wouwerman, Le Colombier du Mareschal, 1737, etching, 350 x 464 mm; Moyreau 1737–62, no. 26. BM, London, 1847,0305.67 [3].29
2) Philips Wouwerman, The Check in Front of the Smithy, monogrammed PHILS. W, panel, 34.4 x 38.3 cm. Schloß Wilhelmshöhe, Kassel, GK 362.30
3) Partial copy on canvas, 39 x 32 cm. Present whereabouts unknown (private collection, The Hague, 1962).31
4) Copy: attributed to Johann Conrad Seekatz (1719–68), canvas, 41 x 52.5 cm. Present whereabouts unknown (Arnold sale, Frankfurt, 5 June 2004).32
5) Copy: Ralph Cockburn, A Landscape: Farriers shoeing a Horse, c. 1816–20, aquatint, 182 x 239 mm (Cockburn 1830, no. 26). DPG [4].33

This busy scene, eloquently described by Desenfans in his 1802 catalogue (see note 20), contains fourteen figures in a rustic setting, the most important of which is a farrier shoeing a horse. Wouwerman produced many works on this theme throughout his career (e.g. Related works, no. 2), but no two are alike, indicating his endless invention. This is all the more surprising given the narrow range of his themes and the extremely large size of his œuvre. Most probably the 18th-century French printmaker Moyreau regarded the round tower structure as a dovecote: Le Colombier du Mareschal (‘The dovecote of the farrier’). Moyreau seems to have made a series with the maréchal or farrier as a theme: there were others with ‘La grote’ (sic), the grotto, ‘La famille’, the family, and ‘La boutique’, the shop of the farrier.34

Frederik Duparc has suggested a date of 1656 or slightly later for DPG92, which seems correct,35 for while the scene still shows the influence of Pieter van Laer in the placement of the small everyday figures in an outdoor ruinous architectural setting, the horizontal composition and pastel colours in the sky point towards the new style that he developed in the later 1650s and 1660s. Schumacher suggests ‘Around or shortly after 1655’. As his career progressed, Wouwerman’s tonalities lightened and his figures became more animated. At this point he is still concerned with rustic figures characteristic of the Bamboccianti.

DPG92 is documented in 1766 as part of the posthumous sale of the collection of Antoine-Joseph Dézallier d’Argenville (1680–1765), a significant figure in the history of art due to the publication in 1745–52 of his Abrégé de la vie des plus fameux peintres, a work aimed at helping collectors to recognize styles and periods, and the work of individual artists.36 Dézallier d’Argenville had an extensive art collection, consisting of about 6,000 drawings, and 73 of his paintings were auctioned in the year after his death. DPG92 was sold immediately after another Wouwerman, a winter scene, but their differing sizes militate against their being a pair.37 However both pictures were important enough to be included by Moyreau in his Œuvres as nos 26) [3] and 76. Viewed in the light of Dézallier d’Argenville’s theories, the inclusion of DPG92 in his collection underlines not only its characteristic style but also, given his connoisseur status, its exemplary qualities.

Philips Wouwerman
Courtyard with a Farrier shoeing a Horse, c. 1655
canvas, oil paint 46,3 x 55,6 cm
Dulwich (London), Dulwich Picture Gallery, inv./cat.nr. DPG92

Jean Moyreau after Philips Wouwerman
Dovecote of the farrier, dated 1737
paper, etching 350 x 464 mm
London (England), British Museum, inv./cat.nr. 1847,0305.67

Ralph Cockburn after Philips Wouwerman
Landscape: Farriers Shoeing a Horse, 1816-1820
paper, aquatint 182 x 239 mm
Dulwich (London), Dulwich Picture Gallery


1 HdG, ii, 1908, pp. 559–60, no. 941 (Engl. edn 1909, pp. 565–6); Schumacher 2006, i, p. 344, calls it ‘Zouterwoude’, meaning Zoeterwoude, a village south of Leiden. The sale catalogue reads: PHILIP WOUWERMAN; no. 134; Dit heerlyk Kabinetstuk, vertoond een Landschap, op de Voorgrond zit een Vrouwtje met een Kind op haar schoot, nevens een Kar met een wit Paard er voor, daar een Man by staat en een Jongetje op zit, op den tweeden Grond ziet men een Heuvel, daar een Wagen en Paard op staat, terwyl twee Mannen Hooi laden, benevens nog twee Jongens die in een Schuit schynen te willen gaan om te visschen, alles zeer fraai van Ligt en Bruin, en van de beste soort van Schildering, op paneel, hoog 16, breed 13¼ duim. (This lovely cabinet piece shows a landscape; in the foreground a woman sits with a child on her lap, next to a cart with a white horse in front of it, with a man standing next to it and a boy sitting on it; in the middle ground is a hill on which there is a cart and horse while two men load hay; next to that two other boys who seem to want to get on a boat to go fishing; everything very beautiful in light and brown, in the best manner of painting, on panel; Dutch dimensions c. 42 x 34.6 cm).

2 ‘WOUWERMANS. Landscape, with Horses, Carts and Figures. On a bank of manure a cart is being loaded away; another is at the foot of it, with a white horse, over which a man is talking to a woman with a child. The composition, grouping, colouring, drawing, &c. of this exquisite little picture are so excellent, that it may be fairly esteemed as one of the most valuable of the master.’

3 ‘Here are some delightful specimens of Wouvermans in this collection. Six of them hang nearly together, low on the left hand in the second room – Nos. 108, 113, 114, 115, 119, 120. One of them, containing a cart and a horse on a little elevation in the centre, is one of the loveliest gems of this master that I have ever seen, both in colouring and composition – but particularly the latter.’

4 ‘There are several capital pictures of horses, &c. by Wouvermans […] particularly the one with a hay-cart loading on the top of a rising ground. The composition is as striking and pleasing as the execution is delicate. There is immense knowledge and character in Wouverman’s horses – an ear, an eye turned round, a cropped tail, give you their history and thoughts – but from the want of a little arrangement, his figures look too often like spots on a dark ground.’

5 ‘This is a picture of estimable quality. Now in the Dulwich Gallery, and worth 250 gs.’

6 pp. 289–90: ‘A mind less stored than his own [Wouverman’s] with the principles both of linear and of aerial perspective, might have so placed the two carts that they could readily be distinguished as to their relative distances from the foreground, by their position on the line of the picture. He has not resorted to any such means; but with a boldness, entirely justified by his masterly success, has depended alone on his command of aerial perspective to afford the scale of such relative distances, and has placed one of the vehicles immediately, or nearly so, above the other. Had there been the slightest failure in the nice gradation of tints between these two objects, the intervening space, and the high bank of the river, the whole truth of the work would have been destroyed. As it is, however, it is impossible not to be struck with the charming fidelity to nature displayed in every part. The figures and the horses are drawn with life-like precision, while the mode of execution, its freedom, lightness, delicacy, and finish, qualities rarely combined, render [the picture] a work of high order in this particular class of painting.’

7 See note 4.

8 ‘A simple natural scene, without that artificial look which we often see in Wouvermans’ finest things, and exquisitely painted.’

9 ‘Truer to nature than usual, of an admirable body and uncommon warmth, force, and clearness of colouring. […] (No. 228).’

10 RKD, no. 262206: https://rkd.nl/en/explore/images/262206 (May 6, 2018); Schnackenburg 1996a, i, p. 329, no. GK 355, ii, fig. 145.

11 https://www.britishmuseum.org/collection/object/P_1847-0305-99 (July 14, 2020); Atwater 1989, iv, p. 1572, no. 2040.

12 Schnackenburg 1996a, i, p. 172, no. GK 164, ii, fig. 152.

13 RKD, no. 289918: https://rkd.nl/en/explore/images/289918 (June 8, 2018); Lilian 2010, pp. 28–30, no. 9 (W. Wagenaar-Burgemeister); with many thanks to Jasper Hillegers.

14 Letter from Simon Reynolds to John Sheeran, late 1982 (DPG182 file).

15 RKD, no. 289544: https://rkd.nl/en/explore/images/289544 (May 18, 2018).

16 Letter from Frederik J. Duparc to Richard Beresford, 18 Aug. 1997 (DPG182 file).

17 GPID (7 May 2015): Philippe Wouvermans – Un autre Tableau connu sous le nom du Colombier du Maréchal par l'Estampe gravée, par J. Moyreau, No. 26: M. J. B. Descamps annonce ce Tableau du nombre des plus connus de Philippe Wouvermans: il est peint sur toile de 17 pouces de haut sur 20 pouces & demie de large (Another painting, known as Le Colombier du Maréchal after the print engraved by J. Moyreau, No. 26: M. J. B. Descamps says this painting is among the best known of Philippe Wouvermans’ works: it is painted on canvas [French dimensions]). According to Smith (1829–42, i (1829), p. 220), 801 livres was £32.

18 Philippe Wouwermans; No. 71; Le Colombier du Maréchal Ferrant, qui se trouve en estampe, gravée par Moyreau; H. 17 x L. 20 pouces. According to Smith, ƒ1,820= £164.

19 According to Schumacher 2006, p. 181, there was a Desenfans sale in Paris on 28 Feb. 1795 (no lot number is mentioned by her) where DPG92 was at auction, and possibly bought in; Schumacher 2006 repeatedly assumes that there was a Paris sale in Feb. 1795; she most probably confuses this with the London sale (under DPG78 / DPG91 / DPG18, see also notes 3 and 23). According to GPID (19 June 2013) on 28 Feb. 1795 three pictures by Wouwerman were at auction in London, but none of them depicting a farrier or a farrier’s shop: lot 17, ‘A Return from the Chace; lot 81, ‘A Landscape. An extensive scene, with a river like the Danube in the distance…’; and lot 93, ‘A Landscape, with a Traveller giving Charity to poor Peasants’.

20 Desenfans 1802, pp. 93–5, no. 118: ‘The other picture, its companion [NB: under no. 118 two pictures are described, but the present whereabouts of the other picture are unknown], is painted with the same delicacy, and is in all respects, of equal merit. It represents one of those old buildings raised formerly, and such as they now construct in villages, with pieces of brick and highway stone, to build at a small expence; these different materials cemented together form solid walls […] it is long, with two doors, and serves for two different families; near the first, is a farrier employed with his workmen, shoeing a beautiful white horse, upon the back of which the master, who has just alighted, has left a red cloak and valise; his dog is at his side, seeking to caress him, and behind a little page in livery, waiting with his hat in his hand. The farrier’s wife is on the threshold of the door, over which is a grated window; a child is by her side, and in her arms, another still at the breast; a gentleman, whose white dog is lying near him, is waiting till his friend’s horse is shod; and is conversing with her, while another woman is climbing over a low wall which is between the two houses, with a basket of linen to dry.

21 ‘Ditto [= Wouwermans]. Old Buildings, with Farrier shoeing a Horse.’

22 ‘This is no less beautiful in execution than the foregoing [no. 119 = DPG78]; and if not so perfect as a composition – not so “one and indivisible” – it is more various and animated. The figure of the cavalier who is waiting at the door of the shed while his horse is shod, is an exquisite example of Wouvermans’ finishing, and the air of it is elegance itself; while several other parts of the picture are touched with great freedom and spirit, considering the extremely diminutive scale on which the whole is painted. The two foregoing [nos 119 and 120 = DPG78 and 92] are perhaps the best pictures in the Collection by this most pleasing artist.’

23 ‘Collection of M. d’Argenville 1766 801 frs. 32l. / – M. Herron Brussels, 1788 1820 flo. 164l. – Noel Desenfans 1802 200 gs. Now in the Dulwich Gallery.’

24 ‘Monsieur Jules [the writer’s companion during the visit to DPG]; but he is absorbed over the wonderful colour and execution of a group of old buildings, in a picture (No. 137), by Wouvermans [DPG92]. No sooner have I joined him in admiration of this…’

25 ‘“Le Colombier du Maréchal.” […] Also a picture of great fullness and depth of colour. (No. 144.).’ NB: Waagen made a mistake here, as no. 144 is DPG97, and not Le Colombier du Mareschal, which is DPG92.

26 1859: ‘This celebrated and exquisite picture was formerly in the Collection of M: D’Argenville at Paris. Descamps Vol: ii p: 292 alludes to it there as “un tableau connu sous le nom du Colombier”. It was sold in 1766 for 801 francs, and again in 1788 from the Collection of M: Herron of Brussel for 1800 francs. See Smith’s Catalogue Raisonné. No: 69. It has been engraved under this title by Moyreau. No: 26.’

27 ‘M. D’Argenville; […] Herron 1788 […] Noel Desenfans, 1802, for 200 guineas.’

28 According to Schumacher, p. 181, no. A29 was possibly London BI 1815, no. 71.

29 RKD, no. 289766: https://rkd.nl/en/explore/images/289766 (May 28, 2018); see also https://www.britishmuseum.org/collection/object/P_1847-0305-67 (May 19, 2020); Atwater 1989, iv, pp. 1553–4, no. 2008. The inscriptions indicate that the picture was in the collection of Monsieur d’Argenville, Maitre des Comptes, and give the dimensions: vingt pouces six lignes wide by dix sept pouces high.

30 Schumacher 2006, no. A27; Schnackenburg 1996a, i, pp. 330–31, no. GK 362, ii, fig. 146, colour pl. p. 319.

31 Schumacher 2006, p. 181, under no. A29.

32 ibid.

33 RKD, no. 289546: https://rkd.nl/en/explore/images/289546 (June 8, 2018).

34 Moyreau 1737–62, nos 59 (grote), 40 (famille) and 21 (boutique); Atwater 1989, iv, pp. 1572–73, no. 2041 (59); pp. 1561–62, no. 2022 (40); p. 1551, no. 2004 (21).

35 Letter from Frederik J. Duparc to Richard Beresford, 18 Aug. 1997 (DPG92 file).

36 For Dézallier d’Argenville see Michel 2009–10, Maës 2009–10, and Vallet 1967. For his own publication, see Dézallier d’Argenville 1745–52.

37 GPID (7 May 2015): Rémy, Paris, 3 March 1766, lot 24: Philippe Wouvermans – Un Tableau du bon tems de Philippe Wouvermans, représentant un Hiver, peint sur bois, il porte 12 pouces de haut, sur 18 de large. J. Moyreau en a gravé l’Estampe, qui a pour titre les Bucherons, c'est la 76 de son Œuvre. (A picture from Philippe Wouwerman’s good period, depicting a winter scene, on panel, [French dimensions] 12 pouces h x 18 w, J. Moyreau made a print after it, which is called the Lumberjacks, it is no. 76 of his Works); bt Basan, 380l. For the Moyreau print see Moyreau 1737–62, no. 76, BM, London, 1847,0305.117; Atwater 1989, iv, p. 1582, no. 2058.

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