Jan Baptist Kobell
Delfshaven 1778-Amsterdam 1814
A sleeping Cow, Goat and Sheep

PROVENANCE: Freiherr von Heyl zu Herrnsheim (born 1844-1925) (Frits Lugt 2879); Private European Collection till 2012.

Signed in black chalk lower right margin, J Kobell f, black chalk, black chalk framing lines, watermark fleur-de-lis above a shield

311 x 287 mm. (8 1/4 x 11 3/8 in.)


During his lifetime Kobell had an international reputation and according to Immerzeel, Holland may be proud of this painter and draughtsman, who among the later masters occupies the highest ranks in the artful portrayal of landscapes with a robust staffage of cows, sheep, horses and goats and a few years later Kramm wrote If there is one artist in Europe who in the early years of this century caused the sputtering candle of the arts to burn bright and clear, then it was without doubt the well-known landscape and animal painter Jan Kobell.

Kobells earliest work is of painted wall decorations featuring landscapes and cattle for the trustees room of a Utrecht orphanage. Kobell executed these in 1795, and the age of just 16, these work do not survive but where probably inspired by his teacher Willem Rutgaart ven der Wall (1756-1813). Kobells drawings were also inspired by Paulus Potters pictures, in particular his painting of Reflection of a Cow in the Mauritshuis.

Comparable drawing by Kobell have been on the market is recent years, including Cows and Sheep in a Pasture Piasa, Paris, lot 79 31 March 2000, and one of Cows by a Tree sold at Christies New York, 11 January 1989, lot 175.

Our drawing was once in the collection of Max Freiherr von Heyl zu Herrnsheim, who was born in Worms and possessed a fine collection of old master drawings according to Frits Lugt, there was sale of his collection in 1903, held by Gutekunst