Cornelis Saftleven
Gorkum 1607-1681 Rotterdam
A Farmyard with Thatched buildings

With inscription 'Dekker/ No 20.' (verso) Black chalk, grey wash, watermark foolscap, pen and brown ink framing lines

246 x 185 mm. (9 x 7 in.)

The attribution of this drawing, first suggested by Martin Royalton-Kisch and independently by William Robinson, has been confirmed by Dr. Wolfgang Schulz1. Dr Schulz dates our drawing to circa 1660s. Our drawing can be compared to others on stylistic grounds2.

Cornelis, together with his brother Herman Saftleven the Younger (1609-1685), were trained by their father Herman Saftleven, until his death in 1627. It is not known whether they had any other masters. Between 1634 and 1637 the brothers collaborated on several paintings. Usually barn interiors in which Cornelis painted the animals. From 1637 Cornelis lived in Rotterdam. He took various apprentices and was head of the local painters Guild. Cornelis was a versatile and inventive painter, draughtsman and etcher. His subjects included landscapes, animal subjects, diableries, allegories and peasant interiors. He is most remembered in his drawings for his landscapes and animal and figure studies. Our drawing is a fresh and striking example of the first category of drawings, and is a new discovery by the artist. It is also interesting to note how the brothers shared their drawings, as Dr Schulz has recently pointed, since our drawing is based on a signed drawing by Herman Saftleven in the Albertina in Vienna3.

1.Written communication 25th May 2000.

2.W. Schulz, Cornelis Saftleven 1607-1681, Leken und Werke, 1978, Berlin and New York, pp. 122, 165, 169, 179-180, pls. 79-84.

3.Inv. No. 9089.