(Gorinchem 1564 - Utrecht 1651)
Drapery Study of a Seated Figure
A sketch of an arm in black chalk on the verso.
Inscribed Abraham Bloemaert, in a modern hand, on the verso.
121 x 186 mm. (4 3/4 x 7 3/8 in.)
Bloemaert was a gifted and prolific draughtsman, praised as such by his biographer Karel van Mander, who noted that the artist ‘has a clever way of drawing with a pen, and, by adding small amounts of watercolour, he produces unusual effects’. He produced numerous studies for paintings and engravings - some six hundred prints after his designs are known - as well as several landscape drawings and many sheets of studies of heads, hands and arms. Some of the latter were reproduced as engravings by his son Frederik and published in the 1650s as the Konstryk Tekenboek, a sort of model-book for students. The Tekenboek proved very popular and was reprinted several times, serving to perpetuate Bloemaert’s influence on later generations of artists. (Indeed, the 18th century French artist François Boucher published a series of etchings after Bloemaert’s figure studies, known as the Livre d’etude d’après les desseins originaux de Blomart, which appeared in Paris in 1735.) The bulk of Bloemaert’s enormous corpus of drawings, numbering around 1,700 sheets, appear to have been retained by his descendants for over fifty years, and it is not until the first half of the 18th century that they began to be sold and dispersed.
Iohan Quirijn van Regteren Altena, Amsterdam (his posthumous sale stamp [Lugt 4617] stamped on the verso), until 1980
By descent to his wife, Augusta Louisa Wilhelmina van Regteren Altena, née van Royen, Amsterdam, until 2006
Thence by family descent until 2015
The I. Q. van Regteren Altena sale, Amsterdam, Christie’s, 13 May 2015, lot 123 Private collection.