Paris, France, circa 1825
Jan Frans van Dael (1764-1840) – Flemish floral and landscape painter
Signed within the representation ‘Van Dael’
Dimensions: 47 x 38 cm
Provenance: Private collection, Germany
We are grateful to Fred G. Meijer of the RKD, The Hague, for his help in cataloguing this lot
A still life with rose bouquet on a marble ledge, executed in the finest academic painting quality – a classical motif by the Belgian painter who was highly regarded for his meticulous and lifelike depictions of flowers; comparable floral still lifes by van Dael in a similar size fetch up to €280,000 at international auctions
In the present composition, which is typical of the artist’s work, Jan Frans van Dael gracefully arranged some delicately colored roses in a glass vase. The latter is placed on a marble ledge, as can be found in numerous still lifes by the artist. The Flemish painter rendered the present flower arrangement, which he probably painted from nature, in a fine and lively manner of painting. The work is reminiscent of the works by the Dutch and Flemish masters of the Golden Age, but the light color scheme also reflects the French taste of the period. The individual flower heads are painted with great detail but appear together as a harmonious unit. Before the subtle, neutral background the delicate pink buds appear even more life like.
The painting is signed ‘Van Dael’ within the representation (edge of the marble slab). It is in good condition with exceptional fresh colors, showing craquelure and some tiny scattered retouchings. The frame shows some wear. The framed work measures 64.5 x 56.5 cm, the stretcher frame measures 47 x 38 cm.
Jan Frans van Dael (1764-1840)
Jan Frans van Dael was born in Antwerp in 1764. At the age of twelve, he began studying architecture at the Antwerp Academy. In 1786 he moved to Paris, where he initially worked as a decorative painter. He quickly gained renown as a painter of portraits, interiors and religious subjects before he devoted himself primarily to the representation of floral and fruit still lifes. From 1791 van Dael regularly exhibited his work in the Parisian Salons and was honored with numerous awards, his sough-after works achieved the highest prices. He was popular with the French ruler and a protégé of the Empresses Josephine and Marie-Louise. For the wife of Napoleon, he created two large paintings ‘L’ Offrande à Flore’ and ‘Le Tombeau de Julie’. From 1796 he had a studio in the Louvre where he made the acquaintance of fellow still life painters Pierre Joseph Redouté and Gerard van Spaendonck. Works of the artist are held in various prestigious collection, including the Musée du Louvre in Paris, the Hermitage in St. Petersburg and in Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge.
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