Salomon van Ruysdael
Naarden 1600 - Haarlem 1670
Sailing Ship off the Coast.
Sailing Ship off the Coast.
Signed and dated on the boat: SVR
Oil on Panel, 18 x 24 cm.ENQUIRES
Paris, collection Sedelmeyer[i];
France, private collection until 2020.
[i] According to a red wax seal on the reverse of the painting.
The present painting, which is in remarkably good condition, is one of a number that Salomon van Ruysdael painted in Haarlem around 1650. On the back of the panel is the collection stamp of Charles Sedelmeyer (1837-1925), a Viennese art dealer who moved to Paris and opened a gallery on rue de La Rochefoucauld, where, in 1893, Jean-François Millet’s The Angelus was sold for 553,000 francs, along with many old master paintings including works by Dutch masters. The composition is bathed in a special atmosphere so diffuse that it recalls the light application of watercolour. The subject of the painting is shipping on a river; the sailboat flying the Dutch flag is a “schouw”, a shallow-draft vessel used to ship goods and carry occasional passengers on inland waterways. On the riverbank along the horizon a windmill can be seen, and the contours of a distant village.
A comparative marine painting can be found in the collection of The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.[i] Although the present version is smaller, both are comparable in composition and atmosphere, though our painting is warmer in tonality, and both are in very well-preserved condition.
Salomon was the son of the Mennonite cabinetmaker Jacob Jansz de Goyer (c. 1560-1616) from Naarden.[ii] Shortly after his father’s death, Ruysdael and his brother Isack – the father of the famous landscape painter Jacob van Ruisdael (1628/29-1682) – moved to Haarlem, where Salomon entered the Guild of St Luke in 1623 under the name Salomon de Gooyer. Shortly thereafter he adopted the name Ruysdael from the castle of that name in the Gooiland, which may once have been a family possession. Although several history paintings, and even some still lifes and batailles by his hand are known, Van Ruysdael is most of all known as one of the ‘classic’ masters of Dutch seventeenth century landscape painting. His subject matter included seascapes, winter landscapes, dune landscapes, village views and a wide variety of river landscapes. While initially adhering to the new, realistic landscape style of Esaias van de Velde (1587-1630), Ruysdael – whose earliest dated picture is from 1626 – quickly elaborated his manner, and together with Jan van Goyen (1596-1656) and Pieter de Molyn (1595-1661), created a distinctive landscape art depicting the environs of Haarlem, applying a restricted tonal range to a modest subject matter.
Sometime before 1627 Ruysdael married Maycke Willemsdr Buyse (d. 1660), also from a Mennonite family background. Their son Jacob Salomonsz van Ruysdael (1629/30-1681) also became a painter. During the next three decades, Salomon established himself as a well-to-do Haarlem citizen and a prolific and successful painter who had several pupils, among them his son, his nephew Jacob van Ruysdael (1628/9-1682), and Cornelis Decker (c. 1620-1678). Mayke died in 1660, followed ten years later by her husband, who was buried in Haarlem’s St Bavokerk.
[i] Salomon van Ruysdael, Marine, signed and dated (lower right on plank): SvR.1650, oil on panel, 34.6 x 43.5 cm., inv.71.98
[ii] Biography based on I. Van Thiel-Stroman, in: N. Köhler (ed.), Painting in Haarlem 1500-1850 : The collection of the Frans Hals Museum, Ghent 2006, pp. 289-293.