Museum and Other News
Alkmaar: Tthe Stedelijk Museum Alkmaar has acquired The Parting of Jacob and Laban by Cornelis Cornelisz Buys (1495/1500-1545). Half the purchase price was given by an anonymous donor, the rest by Vereniging Rembrandt, VSBfonds and the city of Alkmaar. The work was acquired through Johnny Van Haeften, London, who presented it at TEFAF in Maastricht.
- The Rijksmuseum has acquired Landscape with an Episode from the Conquest of America (c. 1535) by Jan Mostaert. In the 1930s the panel was with Jacques Goudstikker. During the German occupation, it was confiscated for the collection of Hermann Goering. After the war, the painting was placed in the custody of the state of the Netherlands and displayed in the Frans Hals Museum. In 2006, the painting was restored to Goudstikker’s heirs
- Bob van den Boogert resigned from the Rembrandt House Museum in September 2013. The museum is looking for an exhibition curator.
- The Rubenshuis acquired Rubens’s Portrait of Michiel Ophovius (c. 1615-c. 1617). Several versions of this portrait exist of which two are considered the best: one in the Mauritshuis, The Hague, the other the one now in the Rubenshuis. The two versions are displayed together at the Rubenshuis until September 2014. Ben van Beneden, director of the Rubenshuis, has stated that the version acquired by his museum probably was produced by an assistant and afterwards retouched by the master. (The Rubenianum Quarterly, 2013, no. 1.)
- Following paintings are in the Rubenshuis on long-term loan from private collections: two portraits by Anthony van Dyck, William II, Prince of Orange and Bishop Jan van Malderen; Jan Brueghel the Elder, Monkeys Feasting (Singerie); Frans Snyders, Still Life with a Hare, Tazza and Grapes; Peter Paul Rubens, The Conversion of Saul; Alexander Adriaenssen, Still Life with Fruit, Fish and Vegatables.
- The project “Digitizing the Corpus Rubenianum Ludwig Burchard” was launched in September 2013, financed with support from the Samuel H. Kress Foundation. In the first phase, every volume published before 1999 will be digitized and published online.
- The Rubenianum acquired the documentation of Marie-Louise Hairs, the well known Belgian art historian and author of Dans le sillage de Rubens (1977) and, more famously, Les peintres flamands de fleurs au XVIIe siècle (1955).
Berlin: The collection of Old Master paintings will no longer be moved from the Gemäldegalerie at the Kulturforum to the Bode Museum on the Museumsinsel and a new gallery planned opposite it. The Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation now says that the project is too expensive. Instead, the construction of a new museum has been recommended at the Kulturforum behind the Neue Nationalgalerie to house works from the Nationalgalerie and the Ulla and Heiner Pietzsch Collection. (From The Art Newspaper, October 2013.)
- The Descent of the Holy Spirit by the Master of the Baroncelli Portraits has been placed on loan at the Groeningemuseum from a private collector.
- The Prentenkabinet of the Groeningemuseum has launched the project of cataloguing and digitizing its collection of 14,000 prints and 3,000 drawings. The first result of this undertaking was the exhibition “De 17de eeuw door de ogen van Jacques Callot,” shown at the Arentshuis, February 1 – May 20, 2013.
Detroit: Outrage has been expressed widely at the thought of selling off part of the Detroit Institute of Art’s holdings to pay off the city’s debt. Although the collection and building are owned by the city, it is by no means clear whether it can legally do so. And even if works were to be sold (this would apply only to those purchased by the city and not those donated), the amount thus gained would be a mere drop in the bucket: 2 bn against an 18 bn dollar debt. Among the Netherlandish works under consideration are Pieter Bruegel the Elder’s Wedding Dance and Rembrandt’s Visitation (1640). (The Art Newspaper, September 2013)
MoveOn has started a petition in support of making the Detroit Institute of Arts a National Monument, which would make it impossible to sell the collection: http://petitions.moveon.org/sign/make-the-detroit-institute?source=homepage
Another petition has been started by Jeffrey Hamburger: http://www.change.org/petitions/mr-kevyn-duane-orr-emergency-manager-of-the-city-of-detroit-prevent-sale-of-works-from-the-detroit-institute-of-arts
Edinburgh: The Scottish National Gallery acquired a magnificent flower painting by Jan van Huysum (1682-1749).
Haarlem: Ann Demeester, currently general manager of De Appel Arts Centre, Amsterdam, has been appointed director of the Frans Hals Museum as of February 1, 2014.
Isenheim: Matthias Grünewald’s Isenheim altarpiece will be moved from the Musée Unterlinden near Colmar to a nearby Domenican church in November 2013 while the museum’s chapel is renovated. The altarpiece will be on display in the church until spring 2015. (From The Art Newspaper, October 2013.)
Leeuwarden: The Fries Museum opened on September 13, 2013, with an exhibition on the Friesian Golden Age.
Leiden: In July Brill acquired the annual Netherlands Yearbook for History of Art (NKJ) and the accompanyting book series Studies in Netherlandish Art and Cultural History. In addition to the current print edition, a digital version of NKJ will be available for subscription as of January 2014.
London: Rubens’s ceiling in Whitehall’s Banqueting House is to be examined by conservators in January 2014 to determine whether treatment is required. Since its installation in 1636, the ceiling paintings have been subjected to restorations at least nine times, the most drastic in 1906 when the huge canvases were glued onto plywood. According to the chief conservator for Historic Royal Palaces, Kate Frame, work will be confined to securing the edges of the canvases, if they are beginning to come away from the plywood. HRP is also considering re-presentation of the interior of Banqueting House; research into its original appearance is under way. (The Art Newspaper, June 2013)
Los Angeles: The J. Paul Getty Museum acquired an early self-portrait by Rembrandt: Rembrandt Laughing, c. 1628.
New York: The so-called “Geese Book” in the Pierpont Morgan Library and Museum (Morgan, M. 905) is now available at http://geesebook.asu.edu. The site presents the full fascimile of the two-volume manuscript, selected chants recorded by the Schola Hungarica, videos with background information and critical commentary in English and German, codicological analysis, archival sources and bibliography. Produced in Nuremberg between 1503 and 1510, the book preserves the complete mass liturgy compiled for the parish of St. Lorenz. The manuscript is famous for its representations of animals, wild folk, and a dragon. The project is an international collaborative undertaking situated at Arizona State University.
- The Fondation Custodia acquired Jacob van Loo (1614-1670), Diana and Callisto (oil on canvas, 99.1 x 81.3 cm), as well as drawings by Jan Vermeer van Haarlem the Elder (1628-1691, Inn on a Wooded Road; Jan Baptist Weenix (1621-1660/61), Landscape with Travellers near a Natural Bridge; Jan de Bisschop (1628-1671), View of Amersfoort from a Distance; Jan Frans van Bloemen, called ‘Orizzonte’ (1662-1749), the Roman Campagna with a View of Vignanello, c. 1740.
- In April 2012 the Fondation acquired a large drawing by Hendrik de Clerck (1570-1630). It was discovered that the drawing, which underwent extensive restoration, does not represent The Surrender of Calais, as previously thought, but The Surrender of Six German Towns to Charles V in 1547. Indeed, the sheet seems to belong to a series on the life of the emperor, spread out over several collections, also including compositions by Maerten de Vos, De Clerck’s master.
- Another acquisition is Roemer Visscher’s Sinnepoppen, Amsterdam 1614. The copy contains two drawings, The Lute Player and The Falconer on Horseback, which lie alongside the corresponding etchings.
- The Portrait of Hugo Grotius by Jan van Ravesteyn (c. 1572-1657) was sent to the Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam, for one year for a presentation focusing on the intellectual life and scholarship in 17th-century Holland. (Fondation Custodia E-News, March 2013)
Reading: A small drawing measuring 10.8 x 8.9 cm by Peter Paul Rubens depicting a profile view of Marie de’ Medici was discovered in a closet at the University of Reading in May 2013. The sheet once belonged to Jonathan Richardson, an early collector of Rubens drawings.
Rotterdam: The Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen acquired Lucas Cranach the Elder, Portrait of Desiderius Erasmus, on loan from the Erasmus Foundation. Cranach never met Erasmus but used a painting by Hans Holbein the Younger. The work is the focus of a small exhibition, together with portrait prints of Erasmus (October 12, 2013 – February 16, 2014).
Schwerin: The Berlin collector Christoph Müller donated his collection of 155 Netherlandish paintings to the Staatliches Museum Schwerin. This is the largest donation of Old Master paintings given to a German Museum since WWII, making the museum’s already outstanding holdings in Netherlandish paintings into one of the largest in Germany. The donation
is accompanied by an exhibition, "Kosmos der Niederländer: die Schenkung Christoph Müller," October 11, 2013 – February 16, 2014 and by a catalogue ed. by Dirk Blübaum and Gero Seelig (see under Exhibitions: Germany).
The Hague: CODART presented its anniversary issue of CODART eZine at the CODART Symposium “The World of Dutch and Flemish Art” in the Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam, October 15, 2013. The issue contains articles on Dutch and Flemish art in museums around the world: ezine.codart.nl
Venice: Jheronimus Bosch’s Hermit Saints Triptych and Triptych of St. Uncumber in the Gallerie dell’Accademia as well as the Four Visions of the Hereafter in the Palazzo Grimani, Venice, will be exhibited at the Noordbrabants Museum, s’-Hertogenbosch, starting December 2015, commemorating the 500th anniversary of the artist’s death in 1516. The panels will undergo conservation in Venice by a team of Italian and Dutch experts, and three international conservators, with financial contributions from the Bosch Research & Conservation Project (BRCP) and the Getty Foundation. The study preceding the conservation work was carried out by the BRCP at the initiative of the Jheronimus Bosch 500 Foundation, The Noordbrabants Museum and Radboud University, Nijmegen. It is supported by Queen’s University, Kingston (Ontario) and the Stichting Restauratie Atelier Limburg, Maastricht, and the University of Arizona, Tucson.
The website http://boschproject.org was created with multiple goals in mind. The innovative synchronized image viewers will serve as practical tools during the conservation interventions of the panels in Venice. X-radiographs will be added when they become available. These image viewers are a significant advance for the fields of conservation/restoration and technical art history. The site also serves as a pilot for a much larger web application to be launched in December 2015. (From Codart News May 28, 2013: http://www.codart.nl/news/963/)