Abraham van Calraet DPG63, DPG65, DPG71
DPG63 – Cows and Sheep in a Farmyard
c. 1660–1722; oak panel, 37.2 x 51.5 cm
Monogrammed, bottom right: AC
Bourgeois Bequest, 1811; Britton 1813, p. 10, no. 78 (‘Library Cuyp’s / no. 15, Do [i.e. A Landscape] Two cattle & two sheep – P[anel] Do [i.e. Cuyp]’; 2'1" x 2'6").
Cat. 1817, p. 4, no. 34 (‘FIRST ROOM – West Side; Cows and Sheep; Cuyp’); Haydon 1817, p. 373, no. 34 (A. Cuyp);1 Cat. 1820, p. 4, no. 34 (Cuyp); Cat. 1830, p. 3, no. 5 (Cuyp); Jameson 1842, ii, p. 444, no. 5 (Cuyp);2 Denning 1858, no. 5 (‘said not to be genuine’);3 Denning 1859, no. 5 (Cuyp); Sparkes 1876, p. 44, no. 5 (Cuyp); Richter & Sparkes 1880, p. 47, no. 5 (Cuyp); Richter & Sparkes 1892 and 1905, p. 15, no. 63;4 HdG, ii, 1908, p. 198, no. 696 (Cuyp; Engl. edn 1909, p. 208); Cook 1914, p. 36, no. 63; Cook 1926, p. 35 (records Denning 1858 ‘said not to be a genuine work’); Cat. 1953, p. 13 (first attribution to Calraet); Chong 1993, p. 520, under Calr 41 (as a version of a painting in the collection of M. de Hevesi, Vienna, 1937 [Related works, no. 1], extended at the left); Murray 1980a, p. 299; Beresford 1998, p. 57 (Calraet); Jonker & Bergvelt 2016, pp. 47, 51; RKD, no. 287273: https://rkd.nl/en/explore/images/287273 (Dec. 11, 2017).
The grain of the wood and the grey ground are visible in some parts of the sky. Areas of the paint surface have suffered damage from abrasion; the central cow is particularly worn. The painting has been heavily retouched in the trees, shadows and weeds. The resin varnish has been partially removed. Previous recorded treatment: 1949–55, partially cleaned, Dr Hell.
1) Repetition of the right half: Abraham van Calraet, Two cows before a building, monogrammed lower right A.C., panel, 38.5 x 32.6 cm. Present whereabouts unknown (Fischer Kunstauktionen, Luzern sale, 26–28 Nov. 2014, lot 1053; private coll. Switzerland; private coll. S. Kohn, Vienna) . This painting has only recently come to my attention. This is most probably the painting mentioned by Chong as his Calr 41. On the image in the Witt collection is mentioned wrongly 70 x 20 cm. According to Chong the monogram A.C. is lower left, and the dimensions of the panel: 70 x 40 cm. If it is the same painting the provenance goes further back: M. de Hevesi, Vienna, 1937; J. H. J. Mellaart, London, 1929 (both on the Witt image and under Chong Calr 41).
2) Similar composition, with the cow looking straight ahead: Abraham van Calraet, Cattle Piece, monogrammed A.C., 1660–80, panel, 39.5 x 55.5 cm. Chong Calr 40. Van der Hoop Collection, City of Amsterdam, on loan to RM, Amsterdam, SK-C-122 and AM SA 7471).5
3a) Cow positioned as in 2: Abraham van Calraet, In the Stable, monogrammed A.C., 42.5 x 53.5 cm. Chong Calr 37. KMSKB, Brussels, 1512 (as Cuyp).6
3b) Version of 3a: Abraham van Calraet, Stable Interior with Cows, panel, 44.6 x 59.4 cm. Chong Calr 86. Philadelphia Museum of Art (John G. Johnson Collection), Philadelphia, Pa., 424.7
4) Aelbert Cuyp and school, Mountainous Landscape with Shepherds and Cattle, signed A. cuyp, panel, 77 x 106.5 cm. Rijksdienst voor het Cultureel Erfgoed, Amersfoort/Rijswijk, NK 1738 .8
Catalogued as an early work by Cuyp until 1953, when it was reattributed to Abraham van Calraet. A similar composition by Calraet is on loan to the Rijksmuseum (Related works, no. 2). However both the cow and the background are different. While in Amsterdam the landscape seems to be Dutch, in Dulwich a hill or mountain is visible, which could point to Italy. The farms on the right also differ. In Dulwich the cow looks at us (as in Related works, no. 1, a repetition of the right half of DPG63, set against a different version of farmhouses), while in Amsterdam the cow looks straight ahead to the left. That cow appears again in a stable in pictures by Calraet in Brussels and Philadelphia (Related works, no. 3a, 3b). The DPG63 cow appears in a painting that is signed by Aelbert Cuyp, but attributed to that artist ‘and school’; there it is set, with herdsmen and other cattle, in a mountainous landscape (Related works, no. 4) .
As early as 1858 Denning expressed doubts about the attribution to Cuyp in his manuscript catalogue of the Dulwich collection. Given its monochromatic tonalities, it is easy to understand why the attribution had been made, but the spatial arrangement of the scene in two flat planes is very unlike the work of Cuyp.
The poor condition of the painting makes it difficult to be positive as to the attribution; if indeed by Calraet, it is not one of his best compositions.
Abraham van Calraet
Cows and sheep in a farmyard, c. 1660-1722
panel (oak), oil paint 37,2 x 51,5 cm
Dulwich (London), Dulwich Picture Gallery, inv./cat.nr. DPG63
Abraham van Calraet
Two cows before a building
panel, oil paint 38,5 x 32,6 cm
lower right : A.C.
Fischer Kunstauktionen (Luzern) 2014-11-26 - 2014-11-28, nr. 1053
Mountainous landscape with herdsmen and cattle
panel, oil paint 77 x 106,5 cm
Amersfoort/Rijswijk, Rijksdienst voor het Cultureel Erfgoed, inv./cat.nr. NK 1738
DPG65 – White Horse in a Riding School
c. 1660–1722; oak panel, 34.9 x 52 cm
Signed on plank, bottom right: AC
?;9 ?Desenfans, 1804–7: ?Insurance 1804, either no. 102 (‘Cuyp – Horses and Figures’), £100, or no. 103 (‘Ditto [Cuyp] – Ditto [Horses and Figures]’), £80;10 Bourgeois Bequest, 1811; Britton 1813, p. 10, no. 70 (‘Library Cuyp’s / no. 7, A stable with a white horse & a red horse – P[anel] Cuyp’; 1'10" x 2'4").
Cat. 1817, p. 6, no. 81 (‘FIRST ROOM – East Side; Interior of a Riding-House; Cuyp’); Haydon 1817, p. 377, no. 81 (Cuyp);11 Cat. 1820, p. 6, no. 81 (Cuyp); Patmore 1824b, p. 14, no. 73;12 Cat. 1830, p. 7, no. 114; Jameson 1842, ii, p. 460, no. 114; Denning 1858 and 1859, no. 114; Sparkes 1876, p. 46, no. 114; Richter & Sparkes 1880, p. 44, no. 114;13 Richter & Sparkes 1892 and 1905, p. 16, no. 65; HdG, ii, 1908, p. 170, no. 604 (Cuyp; Engl. edn 1909, p. 179); Cook 1914, p. 37, no. 65; Bredius 1919, p. 120 (first attribution to Calraet);14 Cook 1926, p. 36, no. 65 (Cuyp); Cat. 1953, p. 13 (Calraet); Murray 1980a, p. 38; Murray 1980b, pp. 9–10; Haak 1984, pp. 417–18 (fig. 911); Waterfield 1988, pp. 10–11 (fig.); Vogel 1992, pp. 186, 480 (fig. 439); Chong 1992, Calr 239 (Calraet); Chong 1993, p. 525, Calr 63 (‘Doubtful attribution to Abraham van Calraet’); Beresford 1998, p. 57 (Calraet); Jonker & Bergvelt 2016, pp. 48, 51; RKD, no. 225937: https://rkd.nl/en/explore/images/225937 (Dec. 10, 2017).
London/Leeds 1947–53, no. 9 (A. Blunt; attributed to Cuyp, but suggesting Calraet); Williamsburg/Fresno/Pittsburgh/Oklahoma City 2008–10, pp. 44–5, no. 8 (I. A. C. Dejardin).
The paint is heavily abraded in the background shadows. There are pentimenti on the right of the brown horse and the vertical post. Some areas of earlier overpaint were found not to be easily soluble during the painting’s recent treatment and have been left: these include areas in the background and a highlight on the face of the man on the brown horse. Previous recorded treatment: 2004–5, cleaned and restored, S. Plender.
1a) Autograph copy. Duke of Bedford, Woburn Abbey.
1b) Autograph copy, signed (?) with initials, panel, 33 x 49.5 cm. HdG 608. Chong Calr 63. Present whereabouts unknown (Phillips, London, 14 Feb. 1989, lot 9, 33 x 49.7 cm; Christie’s, 19 June 1987, lot 139; Christie’s, 12 July 1985, lot 62; Sotheby’s, 7 April 1982, lot 1360; five earlier sales).15
2) Abraham van Calraet, Two Horses in a Stable, panel, 31.4 x 40 cm. Chong Calr 34. BvB, Rotterdam, 1395 (F. J. O. Boijmans Bequest 1847) .16
3) Copy: Ralph Cockburn, Interior of a Riding School (as Cuyp), c. 1816–20, aquatint, 300 x 401 mm (Cockburn 1830, no. 48). DPG.17
4) Copy: Antoine Alphonse Montfort (as after Aelbert Cuyp), Deux cavaliers (Two Horsemen), inscribed Esquisse faite d’après un tableau de Kuyp, galerie de Dwlitch [sic] août 1848 (Sketch made after a picture by Cuyp, Dulwich Gallery, August 1848), watercolour, 207 x 315 mm. Printroom, Louvre, Paris, RF 8042 recto .18
Lent to the RA to be copied in 1834, 1841 and 1857.
Calraet’s paintings of horses derive primarily from Cuyp’s interest in the subject, but in style they reflect a knowledge of Philips Wouwerman’s hunting scenes. The white horse may be inspired by examples in Wouwerman’s works, but with its small head and stiff posture it is inferior to them. Here the palette is also more monochromatic than that of those artists. During the 19th century DPG65 was paired with DPG71, also by Calraet, although the dimensions are slightly different.
Bredius in 1919 used as comparison a picture in Rotterdam (Related works, no. 2)  to attribute DPG65 to Calraet. Chong deems the attribution to be doubtful, while he still thinks the Rotterdam picture is by Abraham van Calraet himself. We see no reason to disagree with Bredius.
Abraham van Calraet
White Horse in a Riding School, c. 1660-1722
panel (oak), oil paint 34,9 x 52 cm
lower right : AC
Dulwich (London), Dulwich Picture Gallery, inv./cat.nr. DPG65
Abraham van Calraet
Interior of a stable with two gray horses
panel, oil paint 31,4 x 40 cm
Rotterdam, Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, inv./cat.nr. 1395
Antoine Alphonse Montfort after Abraham van Calraet
Two horsemen, dated 1848
paper, aquarel paint (watercolor) 207 x 315 mm
Paris, Musée du Louvre, inv./cat.nr. RF 8042 recto
DPG71 –Two Horses
c. 1660–1722; oak panel, 29 x 40.4 cm
Monogrammed, bottom left: AC
?Desenfans 1804–7; Insurance 1804, either no. 102 (‘Cuyp – Horses and Figures’), £100, or no. 103 (‘Ditto [Cuyp] – Ditto [Horses and Figures]’), £80;19 Bourgeois, 1807–11; Bourgeois Bequest, 1811; Britton 1813, p. 10, no. 73 (‘Library Cuyp’s / no. 10, Two Horses in a Landscape – P[anel] Do [i.e. Cuyp]’; 1'10" x 2'3").
Cat. 1817, p. 6, no. 82 (‘FIRST ROOM – East Side; Two Horses; Cuyp’); Haydon 1817, p. 377, no. 82;20 Cat. 1820, p. 6, no. 82 (Cuyp); Patmore 1824b, p. 14, no. 74 (Cuyp);21 Hazlitt 1824, p. 31 no. 74;22 Cat. 1830, p. 9, no. 156 (Cuyp); Jameson 1842, ii, p. 468, no. 156; Hazlitt 1843, p. 24, no. 156;23 Denning 1858 and 1859, no. 156; Sparkes 1876, p. 47, no. 156; Richter & Sparkes 1880, p. 44, no. 156 (Cuyp);24 Richter & Sparkes 1892 and 1905, p. 18, no. 71; HdG, ii, 1908, p. 158, no. 551 (Cuyp; Engl. edn 1909, p. 167); Cook 1914, p. 41, no. 71 (cites Hazlitt); Mellaart cited in Bredius 1919, p. 120 (first tentative attribution to Calraet);25 Hofstede de Groot 1926, p. 483 (A. van Calraet); Cook 1926, pp. 39–40, no. 71 (Cuyp); Cat. 1953, p. 13 (Calraet); Paintings 1954, pp. 4, ; Murray 1980a, p. 38 (the first to note the initials); Murray 1980b, p. 10; Bol 1982, p. 16 (fig. 7); Chong 1992, Calr 240 (Calraet); Chong 1993, p. 525, Calr 64 (as ‘Doubtful attribution to Abraham van Calraet’); Beresford 1998, pp. 58–9 (Calraet); Jonker & Bergvelt 2016, pp. 49, 51; RKD, no. 225938: https://rkd.nl/en/explore/images/225938 (Dec. 10, 2017).
London/Leeds 1947–53, n.p., no. 10 (A. Blunt: ‘hitherto called Cuyp, but perhaps by Calraet’); Williamsburg/Fresno/Pittsburgh/Oklahoma City 2008–10, pp. 46–7, no. 9 (I. A. C. Dejardin).
Generally in good condition. The panel has pronounced raised horizontal grain. Some red glazes in the brown horse and green leaves have faded. It has been proposed that this painting may be unfinished, and that the khaki-coloured leaves on the left and in the middle distance might be later additions. Previous recorded treatment: 2008, cleaned and restored, S. Plender; 2008, technical investigation, L. Sheldon.
1) Abraham van Calraet, Landscape with Horses and Figures, panel, 35.8 x 53.3 cm. Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge, 77 .26
2) Abraham van Calraet, Landscape with three Horses and a Boy near a House, monogrammed AC, panel, 37 x 58.5 cm. Hermitage, St Petersburg, 950 .27
3a) Copy or version: panel, 32 x 44 cm. Present whereabouts unknown (R. Zomer, Wageningen, 1953; photo RKD).
3b) Copy or version, falsely signed A. Cuyp, panel, 31 x 42 cm. Present whereabouts unknown (De Fursac sale, Brussels, 11 Dec. 1923, lot 50, as A. Cuyp; photo RKD).
4) Copy: Ralph Cockburn, Two Horses (as Cuyp), c. 1816–20, aquatint, 300 x 402 mm (Cockburn 1830, no. 49). DPG.28
Lent to the RA to be copied in 1834, 1841, 1847 and 1857.
Tethered horses waiting for riders frequently appear in Calraet’s work; there are examples in Rotterdam (see under DPG65, Related works, no. 2) , Cambridge (Related works, no. 1) , and St Petersburg (Related works, no. 2) . Particularly when compared to the works in Rotterdam and Cambridge, DPG71 is quite loosely painted. The handling of the tree, on the other hand, is rather similar to that in the Cambridge picture. Given the artist’s sixty-year career it seems impossible to suggest a date. During the 19th century DPG71 was paired with DPG65, also by Calraet, although the dimensions are slightly different.
Writing in 1824, when the picture was attributed to Cuyp, William Hazlitt commented that ‘Nature is scarcely more faithful to itself than this delightfully unmannered, unaffected picture is to it’. Bredius first attributed DPG71 to Calraet in 1919, as Hofstede de Groot did in 1926, but it was not until 1947 that this was accepted in the DPG catalogues. As with the other paintings by Calraet at Dulwich, it has not been possible to identify the picture in Desenfans’ early inventories or sales.
Abraham van Calraet
Two Horses, c. 1660-1722
panel (oak), oil paint 29 x 40,4 cm
lower left : AC
Dulwich (London), Dulwich Picture Gallery, inv./cat.nr. DPG71
Abraham van Calraet
Landscape with figures and horses, c. 1670-1722
panel, oil paint 35,8 x 53,3 cm
Cambridge (England), Fitzwilliam Museum, inv./cat.nr. 77
Abraham van Calraet
Landscape with three horses and a boy near a house, c. 1660-1722
panel, oil paint 37 x 58,5 cm
Saint Petersburg (Russia), Hermitage, inv./cat.nr. 950
1 ‘All choice specimens of the excellencies of this great painter.’
2 ‘In the foreground are two cows, one standing, and one lying down; and on the right [?], near a tree of scanty foliage [?], are a few sheep. C[anvas] about 14 in. by 18 in.’ Although Jameson says the painting is on canvas and DPG63 is on panel, it is most likely that she was referring to it, as at the time there were no other pictures in the First Room of the Dulwich Gallery that she could be referring to. Moreover in both Cat. 1830 and Denning 1858 this is no. 5, now DPG63.
3 Where Denning had written ‘(after)’ Cuyp, he deleted the word ‘(after)’; he seems not to have made up his mind. However in Denning 1859 it is a genuine Cuyp again.
4 ‘An early work; especially clever in the representation of the broad and transparent shadows.’
6 KMSKB 1984, pp. 84–5, no. 1512.
7 RKD, no. 26368: https://rkd.nl/en/explore/images/26368 (Dec. 10. 2017); see also https://www.philamuseum.org/collections/permanent/103702.html?mulR=732089654|5 (April 3, 2020).
9 Desenfans offered two views of riding schools attributed to Cuyp in one of his 1786 sales, but it is unclear whether one of those may have been DPG65 or DPG296: Desenfans private sale, 8ff April 1786 (Lugt 4022), lot 140 (‘Cuyp – Interior view of a riding house. Companion to lot 141. on panel, 1' 9" h x 2' [includes the frame]’ and lot 141 (‘Ditto – its companion’). Unknown transaction, £42.0 for lots 140 and 141.
10 There are three paintings that could be meant by the two descriptions ‘Horses and Figures’ in the Insurance list: DPG65, DPG71 and DPG296.
11 ‘Albert Cuyp. Interior of a Riding-house. A beautiful dapple-gray horse, with scarlet saddle, in the centre, and a horseman riding round the centre post; and a man and boy on foot looking on. The chiaroscuro, drawing, arrangement of colour, and perfection of this picture, as a whole, renders it one of the most finished productions of the Art.’
12 ‘the visitor may now turn to No. 73, a grey horse, which a cavalier is just going to mount, and another cavalier on a bay, in the interior of a riding-house; […] and the air of unmingled truth which pervades the whole of both these pictures [the other one being no. 74, DPG71] cannot be surpassed.’
13 ‘One of the finest pictures of A. Cuijp. The white horse is, with regard to light, colour, and relief, an unequalled masterpiece of its kind. W. Burger says, in reference to a very similar picture in the Museum of Rotterdam [now BvB] (No. 42), “It was these horses of Aelbert Cuijp which prevented Géricault – the celebrated French painter – from sleeping.” [n. 1. Musées de la Hollande, ii, p. 211.]’
14 After having analysed the Rotterdam painting (Related works, no. 3). Bredius says that in Dulwich there is ‘a similar picture of grey horses, certainly by Calraet’.
15 See for earlier sales of this copy Chong 1993, p. 525, under Calr 63.
16 RKD, no. 5815: https://rkd.nl/en/explore/images/5815 (April 21, 2018); see also https://www.boijmans.nl/en/collection/artworks/1868/interior-of-a-stable-with-two-dapple-greys (April 3, 2020).
18 RKD, no. 289464: https://rkd.nl/en/explore/images/289464 (April 3, 2020); see also http://www.culture.gouv.fr/Wave/image/joconde/0178/m503501_d0116507-000_p.jpg (Dec. 10, 2017).
19 See note 10.
20 ‘Partaking of all the excellencies of the last; the horses are particularly finely painted.’
21 ‘and No. 74, a bay-horse tied to a tree, and looking away out of the picture; and a grey which a man is girthing up. The design and foreshortening of the latter, and the expression of the one that is tied to the tree, are admirable; and the air of unmingled truth which pervades the whole of both these pictures [the other one being no. 73, DPG65] cannot be surpassed.’
22 ‘another admirable specimen of this excellent painter. It is hard to say which is most true to nature – the sleek, well-fed look of the bay horse, or the bone and spirit of the dappled iron-grey one, or the face of the man who is busy fastening a girth. Nature is scarcely more faithful to itself than this delightfully unmannered, unaffected picture is to it.’
23 See the preceding note.
24 ‘Apparently an early work; the landscape is here treated as quite an accessory part of the picture.’
25 After having attributed DPG65 to Calraet, Bredius says: ‘Mr Mellaart believes that one or two other stable interiors [DPG71 and DPG296] in that gallery might also be the work of Calraet.’ Bredius 1919, p. 120.
26 RKD, no. 289494; https://rkd.nl/en/explore/images/289494 (April 4, 2020); see also https://artuk.org/discover/artworks/landscape-with-figures-and-horses-5370 (April 4, 2020); Roe 2006, p. 31, no. 77