Saturday, 30 September 2017

Friedrich Nerly’s etching, “Dog seated on a meadow”, 1828


Friedrich Nerly (aka Friedrich Nehrlich) (1807–78)
“Dog seated on a meadow”, 1828, from the series, “Thierstudien gezeichnet und radiert von F. Nerly”

Etching on heavy wove paper lined onto a support sheet of fine washi paper
Size: (sheet) 24.6 x 34.3 cm; (plate) 20.2 x 24.7 cm
Inscribed on tablet at lower left: “Thierstudien gez. u. rad. von F. Nerly 1928”

See also: Peter Hirschfeld 1931, “Rumohr und Nerly, Jahrbuch der Preussischen Kunstsammlungen”, vol. 52; Thomas Gädecke (ed.) 1991, “Friedrich Nerly und die Künstler um Carl Friedrich von Rumohr”, exh. cat., Schleswig-holsteinisches Landesmuseum, Kloster Cismar.

Condition: crisp impression with generous margins in excellent condition (i.e. there are no tears, holes, folds, abrasions, stains or foxing). The print has been laid upon a conservator’s support sheet.

I am selling this superbly rendered etching of a hound for the total cost of AU$136 (currently US$106.71/EUR90.29/GBP79.65 at the time of posting this listing) including postage and handling to anywhere in the world.

If you are interested in purchasing this seldom seen print (very few etchings by Nerly are to be found on the marketplace—probably because collectors are not willing to part with them), please contact me (oz_jim@printsandprinciples.com) and I will send you a PayPal invoice to make the payment easy.

This print has been sold


This study of a hound was executed in 1828 when the artist was 21. I mention the date (shown inscribed on the stone tablet featured at the lower left) because it was a momentous year for him. Not only did he change his surname from “Nehrlich” to “Nerly”, but he also moved from his hometown in Erfurt (central Germany) to Rome.

Evidence that this beautiful drawing was executed at the beginning of Nerly’s artistic career is fairly clear. For instance, note that Nerly has yet to learn how to give pictorial weight to the dog with tonal accents on each side where it makes contact with the ground to avoid the illusion that the dog is levitating. Moreover, Nerly has yet to discover how to adjust the tone of the background so that it is slightly lighter on the shadow side of the dog and slightly darker on the dog’s lit side. Going further, he has still to acquire the subtle technique of erasing details behind areas of the animal that are projecting forward (i.e. use of the visual device of noetic space).

Notwithstanding that this drawing is an early work by Nerly, the drawing has all the hallmarks of an artist on the path to succeed. By this I mean that Nerly already knows how to render the dog’s form convincingly with contour marks. What is especially significant in the treatment of the dog’s contours is that Nerly does not to show textural details in the lit areas of the fur (i.e. he leaves these areas untouched/white). 







Friday, 29 September 2017

Franz Xaver Jungwierth’s etchings, “Boy reading a book” and “Boy with a pick”, after Giovanni Battista Piazzetta


Franz Xaver Jungwierth (aka Franz Xaver Jungwirth; Franz Xaver Andreas Jungwierth) (1720–90)

“Boy reading a book”, c1750, after Giovanni Battista Piazzetta (1682–1754), Plate 17 from the series of 40 plates of head studies after Piazzetta, published by Johann Christian Leopold (1699–1755) in 1753 (see George Knox 1983, 'Piazzetta: A Tercentenary Exhibition of Drawings, Prints and Books', exh. cat. Washington). Note: I have described this print as plate 17 in the series based solely on the inscription, “17”, featured in the text lines.

Etching on laid paper with small margins lined onto a support sheet of washi paper. 
Size: (sheet) 15.3 x 11.2 cm; (plate) 14.5 x 10.2 cm; (image borderline) 12.8 x 9.2 cm
Lettered in two lines below the image borderline: “I. B. Piazetta delineavit”, “F. X. Iungwierth Sc. Mon.”, “17” / “Cum Gratia et Privilegio Sacrae Caesareae Majestatis”, “Iohann Christian Leopold excudit Augustae Vindebicorum"

Nagler 20 (G K Nagler 1835, “Neues allgemeines Künstler-Lexikon”, 22 vols, Munich)

Condition: near faultless impression with small margins in excellent condition for the age of the print (i.e. there are no tears, holes, folds, abrasions, stains or foxing). The print has been laid upon a conservator’s support sheet.

I am selling this very beautiful study for the total cost of AU$106 (currently US$83.10/EUR70.41/GBP62.09 at the time of posting this listing) including postage and handling to anywhere in the world.

If you are interested in purchasing this interpretative masterwork from the early 1700s, please contact me (oz_jim@printsandprinciples.com) and I will send you a PayPal invoice to make the payment easy.

This print has been sold







Franz Xaver Jungwierth (aka Franz Xaver Jungwirth; Franz Xaver Andreas Jungwierth) (1720–90)

“Boy with a pick”, c1735 after Giovanni Battista Piazzetta (1682–1754), Plate 1 from the series of 40 plates of head studies after Piazzetta, published by Johann Christian Leopold (1699–1755) in 1753 (see George Knox 1983, 'Piazzetta: A Tercentenary Exhibition of Drawings, Prints and Books', exh. cat. Washington). Note: I have described this print as plate 1 in the series based solely on the inscription, “1”, featured in the text lines.

Etching on laid paper with small margins lined onto a support sheet of washi paper. 
Size: (sheet) 14.7 x 10.7 cm; (plate) 14.1 x 10 cm; (image borderline) 12.8 x 9.3 cm
Lettered in two lines below the image borderline: “I. B. Piazetta delineavit”, “1”, “F. X. Iungwierth Sc. Mon.” / “Cum Gratia et Privilegio Sacrae Caesareae Majestatis”, “Iohann Christian Leopold excudit Augustae Vindebicorum"

Nagler 20 (G K Nagler 1835, “Neues allgemeines Künstler-Lexikon”, 22 vols, Munich)

Condition: near faultless impression with small margins in excellent condition for the age of the print (i.e. there are no tears, holes, folds, abrasions, stains or foxing). The print has been laid upon a conservator’s support sheet. (Note: the horizontal stroke on the middle of the right edge of the plate is a part of the impression and is not damage.)

I am selling this very beautiful study for the total cost of AU$106 (currently US$83.10/EUR70.41/GBP62.09 at the time of posting this listing) including postage and handling to anywhere in the world.

If you are interested in purchasing this interpretative masterwork from the early 1700s, please contact me (oz_jim@printsandprinciples.com) and I will send you a PayPal invoice to make the payment easy.

This print has been sold






Although there are 40 plates in this series of Jungwierth’s etchings and, accordingly, there should be many of these prints in museums and the art marketplace, they are in fact curiously rare. For example, neither of these etchings are held by the British Museum, the Rijksmuseum or the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Strange!

What makes them special for me is not that they are uniquely different, in terms of technical attributes, to other reproductive prints (i.e. prints that translate—copy—other artworks such as paintings into black and white lines). After all the images of the boy are crafted with only the most basic of rendering techniques (viz. contour lines and hatched strokes) and with almost formulaic stylistic consistency. Instead, my attraction is to the great sensitivity in the way that Jungwierth has rendered light and shade so that the transitions from light to dark are almost imperceptible. Going further, I like the way that Jungwierth captures ambient light. What I mean by this is that the etchings glow with the effect of scattered light so that even the shadows are luminous. If I were to draw comparisons with other artists, my mind drifts to other masters who “bottled light” like Vermeer and Tiepolo.


Thursday, 28 September 2017

Étienne Delaune’s engraving, “Leda and the Swan” (aka “Leda and Jupiter as a swan reclining under a canopy”), c1550


Étienne Delaune (aka Stephanus) (c1518–83)

“Leda and the Swan” (aka “Leda and Jupiter as a swan reclining under a canopy”), c1550, plate 6 from the series "Six Grotesque Prints". The curator of the BM advises that the prints in this series represent “figures from the classical mythology, engraved before Delaune's departure from France (1572/73) as proven by the presence of a copyright on other prints from the same set.” (see BM no. 1890,0415.43)

Engraving on fine laid paper trimmed close to the image borderline.
Size: (sheet) 3.8 cmx 3.8 cm; (diagonal of circular image borderline) 3.6 cm

Robert-Dumesnil 1835-71 IX.109.370 (A P F Robert-Dumesnil 1835, “Le Peintre-Graveur Français”, 11 vols.)

The British Museum offers the following description of this print:
“Circular grotesque print on dark ground, with Leda lying with Jupiter disguised as a swan, in an elaborate structure inhabited by two female figures, two dogs and two birds; at the feet of the lovers, Castor and Pollux breaking through their eggs”

The Rijksmuseum has a copy in reverse of this print by an anonymous engraver; see http://hdl.handle.net/10934/RM0001.COLLECT.413594

Condition: exceptionally rare and crisp (lifetime?) impression trimmed close to the circular image borderline. The sheet is in excellent condition for its age (i.e. there are no tears, holes, folds, abrasions or stains but there is very faint traces of foxing).

I am selling this tiny masterpiece of engraving from the Renaissance era for the total cost of AU$216 (currently US$169.11/EUR143.39/GBP125.95 at the time of posting this listing) including postage and handling to anywhere in the world.

If you are interested in purchasing this incredible display of discipline and skill to create an engraving only slightly larger than a thumb print (albeit a thumb print from a person with an exceptionally large thumb), please contact me (oz_jim@printsandprinciples.com) and I will send you a PayPal invoice to make the payment easy.

This print has been sold


As I commented on another of Delaune’s prints not long ago, Delaune’s prints need to be seen in their true size to fully appreciate how tiny they are. To engrave this print for example Delaune would certainly have needed a magnifying glass to inscribe the tiny engraved lines—simply an incredible display of disciplined skill! I can even picture in my mind’s eye Delaune using the same techniques of magnification employed by early scribes and illuminators of using spherical glass bottles filled with water as a magnifying lens.





Wednesday, 27 September 2017

Wenzel Hollar’s etching, “Mechlin”, c1643


Wenzel Hollar (aka Wenceslaus Hollar; Václav Hollar) (1607–77)
“Mechlin”, c1643, from the series of ten views in Bohemia, Germany and England, “Prospectus aliquot locorum in diuersis provincijs” (New Hollstein 454–63; Pennington 727–38). The curator of the BM advises that the series was “put together as a set by Parthey following George Vertue (III. 120–31)” (see BM no. Q,4.311).

Etching on laid paper with thread margins
Size: (sheet) 8.5 x 13 cm
Inscribed within image at upper left "zu Hemsen beÿ Mechelen".
State i (of ii) before diagonals were added to the shaded side of the mill on the right and the house on the left.

Pennington (2002) 729; New Hollstein (German) 1818.1 (Hollar)

Richard Pennington (2002) offers the following description of this print in “A descriptive catalogue of the etched work of Wenceslaus Hollar 1607–1677”, Cambridge University Press:
“A road in a village crosses a mill-stream by a wooden bridge on which two gentlemen are riding. A gabled mill on r. with a man carrying a sack. On extreme r. a pollarded tree and on extreme l. the end of a house. Unsigned.” (p. 125)

The British Museum offers the following description of this print:
“Mechlin / Mechelen; man carrying sack over his shoulders seen from behind walking along road, gabled house at right and willow tree in the foreground.”

Condition: crisp impression with thread margins and with signs of slight wear to the plate around the area featuring the pollarded tree.

I am selling this exquisite rendered and graphically strong etching by one of the greatest printmakers of history, for the total cost of AU$221 (currently US$173.65/EUR148.05/GBP129.53 at the time of this listing) including postage and handling to anywhere in the world.

If you are interested in purchasing this rare and very beautiful etching, please contact me (oz_jim@printsandprinciples.com) and I will send you a PayPal invoice to make the payment easy.

This print has been sold


One has only to look at Hollar’s meticulously detailed etchings to appreciate that he had a strong understanding about the technical intricacies of architecture and how the correct angle of light falling on a building (usually from the top-front-left) can enhance a viewer’s understanding of the building’s form and structure. From a personal standpoint, however, the graphic strength of this small but visually engaging image is not so much that I can count every tile on the roofs, but rather its strength is all about the juxtaposed arrangement of three-dimensionally solid and somewhat sanitised rendered buildings with what I will describe as “soft” forms of trees and village folk going about their everyday business.






Tuesday, 26 September 2017

Adriaen van Ostade’s etching, “Village Festival under a Trellis”, c1653


Adriaen van Ostade (aka Adriaen Jansz. van Ostade) (1610–85)
“Village Festival under a Trellis” (La fête sous la treille), c1653

Note: the Institut Néerlandais, Fondation Custodia (Paris) holds a related pen drawing in brown ink over graphite with brown and grey wash that is in reverse to this etching.
The British Museum holds four different impressions of this print along with two copies (one by John Frederick Lewis and the other in reverse by David Deuchar); see: http://www.britishmuseum.org/research/collection_online/search.aspx?searchText=+S.1533

Etching on fine laid paper with margins.
Size: (sheet) 14.2 x 19.8 cm; (plate) 12.9 x 17.4 cm; (image borderline) 12.6 x 17.2 cm
Inscribed: (right of centre at the lower edge) “Av. ostade”
State iv (of vii).
Note: My attribution of this impression to state iv is because the borderline in state ii (as shown in TIB) and state iii (as shown in the BM) is fractured on the upper right. This impression is closest to the strengthening of the borderline of state iv (as shown in the BM). I do not believe that it is an impression from states v or vi (as shown in Phagan) because there is strengthening to the lines above the figure entering the doorway on the far right in these later states. Be mindful, however, that my conclusion is based solely on rather poor quality reproductions in books and I do not have access to original impressions from the different states for a thorough assessment.

TIB (1978) 1 47-II (379) (Walter L Strauss & Leonard J Slatkes [Eds.] 1978, “The Illustrated Bartsch”, vol. 1, p. 358); Hollstein 47.IV; Godefroy (1994) 113

The British Museum offers the following description of this print:
“Outside an inn with a crowd of peasants watching others dancing under a vine-covered trellis, a man standing above the crowd and playing a flute and drum.”

See also the description of this print at the Rijksmuseum: http://hdl.handle.net/10934/RM0001.COLLECT.38996  and the exhibition catalogue edited by Patricia Phagan (1994), “Adrianen Van Ostade: Etchings of Peasant Life in Holland’s Golden Age”, Georgia Museum of Art, pp. 234–35.

Condition: an exceptionally rare and near faultless impression with small margins varying in width but approximately 1 cm. The sheet is in superb condition (i.e. there are no holes, folds, stains, abrasions or foxing on the recto side of the sheet but there are minor stains verso).

I am selling this museum quality etching by van Ostade—one of the most important of the masters from the Dutch Golden Age—that is also one of his masterworks, for the total cost of AU$389 (currently US$307.22/EUR260.40/GBP228.51 at the time of this listing) including postage and handling to anywhere in the world.

If you are interested in purchasing this near perfect impression of an acknowledged masterpiece of 17th century, please contact me (oz_jim@printsandprinciples.com) and I will send you a PayPal invoice to make the payment easy.

This print has been sold


This is one of van Ostade’s masterworks of etching. What makes it an important print is not only that it documents a real-life moment in a rural dance from the mid-1600s by showing how everyday farm folk “kicked up their heels”, but it also links the early tradition set by Rembrandt of capturing sparkling light and luminous shadow with the shift to exploring gritty rural narratives by artists like Jan Steen and Cornelis Bega.





Monday, 25 September 2017

Étienne Delaune’s engraving, “Venus with Cupid between Four Burning Hearts”, c1560


Étienne Delaune (aka Stephanus) (c1518–83) Note: Delaune signed his prints “Stephanus” or “S. Goldsmith”, hence the inscription “STEPHAN[U]S” shown in the plate below the image borderline in at lower right.

“Venus with Cupid between Four Burning Hearts”, c1560 (but not later than 1572/73), plate five from the series of six plates of Roman deities, “Grotesques of Classical Divinities” (Harvard) or “Flat Decorations with Figures of gods in Frames of Grotesques” (Rijksmuseum).

(Note: the BM has the complete set of this series; see: http://www.britishmuseum.org/research/collection_online/search.aspx?searchText=Gg,4D.68. Regarding the attribution of a date for this print, according to the curator of the BM, the plate was executed before Delaune’s departure from France [1572/73])

Engraving on fine laid paper lined onto an early laid paper support sheet and trimmed along (or slightly within) the platemark.
Size: (sheet) 7.3 x 5.2 cm; (image borderline) 6.5 x 5 cm
Lifetime impression of the only state

Robert-Dumesnil 1835-71 IX.121.420 (A P F Robert-Dumesnil 1835, “Le Peintre-Graveur Français”, 11 vols.)

The British Museum offers the following description of this print:
“Grotesque print on dark ground, with Venus and Cupid, standing between burning hearts in the middle of an elaborate structure inhabited by various creatures” (http://www.britishmuseum.org/research/collection_online/collection_object_details.aspx?objectId=1420384&partId=1&searchText=Delaune+venus+cupid&page=1)
See the Rijksmuseum for a description of this print: http://hdl.handle.net/10934/RM0001.COLLECT.447936  
See also Irene Margaretha de Groot 1988, “Ornamentprenten in het Rijksprentenkabinet”, Rijksmuseum, p. 243, cat.nr. 562.4

Condition: crisp, lifetime impression trimmed along (or slightly within) the platemark and lined by an early conservator onto a support sheet of laid paper. The sheet is in excellent condition, but there is a replenished loss to the lower right corner and there are remnants of past mounting and pencil notes (verso).

I am selling this small and finely executed print for the total cost of AU$162 (currently US$128.82/EUR108.49/GBP95.38 at the time of posting this listing) including postage and handling to anywhere in the world.

If you are interested in purchasing this miniature masterpiece showcasing Delaune’s 16th century interpretation of Roman ornament, please contact me (oz_jim@printsandprinciples.com) and I will send you a PayPal invoice to make the payment easy.

This print has been sold


Delaune’s prints need to be seen in their true size to fully appreciate how tiny they are. This print, for example, is only slightly larger than a matchbox. The size, however, only makes a viewer examine them like the small jewels that they are. Once the process of examining them with the mind “switched on” to really looking at what is shown in each image one’s jaw can drop very quickly.

In this little nugget of detail, for instance, I was surprised—shocked actually—to see demon-chaps towards the bottom of the image without pants and with wings that would never get them airborne in the act of farting! Awful and funny at the same time. Not only are they passing wind but they also seem to be holding the guts—or a string of eggs—extracted/passed from grimacing serpents disposed on both sides of the composition.

As one’s eye moves in on the depiction of a very graceful Venus at the centre of the composition another surprise awaits the scrutiny of sensitive folk: the little cupid on her right is engaged in a lewd activity with Venus' private parts … or is he simply protecting the Venus from our gaze? 

I guess that the real discovery after examining this wonderful print is realising that Delaune would have been a real party animal in his everyday life.







Sunday, 24 September 2017

Wenzel Hollar’s etching, “Head of a young man”, 1648


Wenzel Hollar (aka Wenceslaus Hollar; Václav Hollar) (1607–77)
“Head of a young man”, 1648, after a lost painting by Hans Holbein (the younger) (1497/8–1543)

Etching on wove paper.
Size: (sheet) 12 x 10.7 cm; (plate) 6.8 x 4.7 cm
Inscribed above the head: (left) “HHolbein inu;'; (right) “WHollar fecit / 1648.”
Nineteenth-century impression of the only state (?). I understand that there were three early editions published in Antwerp of the series of which this plate features—but without the creation of fresh states: 1645 (this edition may not have included this plate as it was executed in 1648), 1648, and 1666.

Pennington (2002) 1551; New Hollstein (German) 1013 (Hollar)

Richard Pennington (2002) offers the following description of this print in “A descriptive catalogue of the etched work of Wenceslaus Hollar 1607–1677”, Cambridge University Press:
“Bust, r. profile, of a clean-shaven young man with straight hair. He wears a soft, flat cap, the brim cut into panels, and a doublet with a slashed collar.” (p. 271)

The British Museum offers the following description of this print:
“Portrait bust of a young man in profile to right, wearing a soft cap with slashed brim and doublet with slashed collar; after Hans Holbein the Younger. 1648” (http://www.britishmuseum.org/research/collection_online/collection_object_details.aspx?objectId=3491302&partId=1&searchText=hollar+1648&page=1)

Condition: well-printed impression with signs of wear to the plate on laid paper in pristine condition with generous margins (varying, but approximately 3 cms).

I am selling this exquisite etching by one of the greatest printmakers of history, Wenzel Hollar, reproducing a now lost painting by Hans Holbein (the younger)—an artist famous for his paintings of the court of Henry VIII (amongst others)—for the total cost of AU$98 (currently US$78.13/EUR65.36/GBP57.90 at the time of this listing) including postage and handling to anywhere in the world.

If you are interested in purchasing this small and delicately executed Tudor period portrait, please contact me (oz_jim@printsandprinciples.com) and I will send you a PayPal invoice to make the payment easy.

This print has been sold


Although the whereabouts of the original painting by Holbein upon which this etching is based is unknown, there may be a very simple explanation to this puzzle, as revealed by Richard T Godfrey (1994) in “Wencelaus Hollar: A Bohemian Artist in England.” Godfrey points out that, as is the case with Hollar’s etched copies of Leonardo’s drawings (see the earlier post featuring one of these prints), Hollar “could show fidelity to his models” (i.e. precise line-by-line faithful copies of the original drawings by Leonardo), “…yet he would sometimes combine elements from several sheets to make a single etched design” (p. 13). In short, what I am proposing (without being privy to more information than is currently available) this portrait may be a concoction—a copy of a portrait by Holbein that never existed at all! Of course, I doubt that this is the case but it is a lovely thought and would resolve the question of whatever happened to Holbein’s portrait.