• Fruit and Lobster on the Table

    Artist:
    Ryckhals, Francois, after 1600-1647
    Technique:
    oil
    Dimensions:
    70x118 cm

Ryckhals, Francois, after 1600-1647

Fruit and Lobster on the Table

Holland, 1640

Title:

Fruit and Lobster on the Table

Place:

Date:

Material:

Technique:

oil

Dimensions:

70x118 cm

Place of finding:

.

Acquisition date:

Entered the Hermitage in 1915; handed over from the P.P. Semenov-Tyan-Shansky collection

Inventory Number:

ГЭ-3075

Comment:

The introductory note to the catalogue of 1914 exhibition by V. А. Shchavinsky [1914] says that the painting was purchased by P.P. Semyonov-Tyan-Shansky from the noted historian A.N. Andreev, who in his turn had bought it at an auction of the Hermitage paintings in 1855. The white reference number that has survived in the lower left corner of the painting coincides with the inventory number of the still life painting ‘Lobster and Fruit’ described in the catalogue of the Stanislaw August collection. [Mańkowski 1932]. It is likely to be the very painting that in the late 18th century was brought to St.Petersburg and sold at an auction after the owner’s death. For a long time this still life, by analogy with the work by Ryckhals from the Kaiser-Friedrich-Museum collection (currently known as the Bode-Museum) in Berlin, marked by exactly the same monogram was mistakenly attributed to Frans Hals the Younger. Ryckhals’ authorship was established for the first time by A.Bredius [1917]. On more than one occasion literary sources stated that the Hermitage item is a pair with the still life from the collection of the Museum of Fine Arts in Budapest (inv. № 265). The latter has the same size, monogram and date. The objects on the table represented in the painting from Budapest are placed diagonally from the upper left corner to the lower right one, while the Hermitage composition presents the viewer with a mirror reflection of the same rhythm. Both still lifes depict similar objects and are close in iconography According to S.Segal [1988], the narrow wineglass depicted in the Budapest painting, is ivy-cloaked which symbolizes eternal life. A similar glass in the Hermitage still life is twined with laurel to embody eternal glory. It is hard to argue that both paintings were intended to be a pair, but their compositional arrangement supports this suggestion.

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