Delft ca. 1611/12 – Delft 1675
View of the Tribune in front of the Organ in the Oude Kerk in Delft
Oil on Panel | with unidentified collectors seal verso
H. 49,5 cm. | W. 41,2 cm.
Private collection | The Netherlands
Janzten, H. (1910/1979). Das Niederlandische Architekturbild. Braunschweig: Klinkhardt & Biermann, p. 237 nr. 530a; p. 238 nr. 556;
Liedtke, W.A. (1982). Architectural Paintings in Delft. Doornspijk, pp. 107-108, Appendix II: nr. 63, nr. 76 and nr. 83;
Maillet, B.G. (2012). Intérieur d’eglises 1580- 1720. La Peinture Architectural dans les Ecole du Nord. Antwerp: Pandora, p. 429 nr. M-1511 and nr. M-1512; p. 447 nr. M-1617; p. 453 nr. M-1655 (with ill. on pp. 34-35)
This unpublished picture was previously attributed to Emanuel de Witte – based on an apocryphal signature – and presently given to the Delft master Hendrick van Vliet. A native of Delft, this master specialized in architectural painting, particularly of church interiors, following the innovative techniques of perspective pioneered by Pieter Saenredam. The Oude Kerk and the Nieuwe Kerk of Delft typically formed the subject of his perspective studies, depicting the architectural details with great precision, making his paintings into historical documents. The large tribune and the organ built in 1539 and situated at the west end of the nave – the tower wall – have long been demolished. However, the Van Spaerwoude epitaph, erected in memory of Clara Jansdochter van Sparwoude ca. 1530 – 1615) and depicted on the left pillar, still remains in-situ to this present day.
Van Vliet frequently returned to a composition, resulting in serveal versions of the same viewpoint, yet with different details of staffage. Van Vliet explored the present composition in at least three other signed ans dated pictures, e.g. View of the tribune in front of the organ in the Oude Kerk in Delft, signed and dated ‘158.’, H. 50,5 cm. W. 46,5 cm., collection of the Národní Galerie v Praze, Prague, (inv. nr. 0-7921; cat. 1961, nr. 80); a second version signed and ‘1661’, H. 43 cm. W. 35,5 cm., collection of the Gemäldegalerie der Akademie der Bildende Künste, Vienna (inv. nr. 687; cat. 1992, nr. 127) and a third version signed and dated ‘H. van Vliet 166.’, H. 42.8 cm. W. 38.5 cm., formerly in the collection of Kunsthandlung Julius Böhler, Munich (RKD nr. 118713). This suggests that the present picture also dates from the third quarter of the 17th century, ca. 1655-1665. Maillet furthermore lists a forth unsigned and undated version, H. 35 cm. W. 28,5 cm., anonymous sale Sotheby’s, London, 1972 and a fifth unsigned and undated version on canvas, H. 33 cm. W. 30,5 cm., anonymous sale Habsburg Feldman, Geneva, 1990.