Gerard Seghers and Workshop
The Penitent Saint Peter,
oil on canvas, 102 x 85.5 cm, framed
We are grateful to Anne Delvingt for confirming the attribution of the present painting to Gerard Seghers and workshop on the basis of a high resolution photograph.
Jean-Pierre de Bruyn also independently confirmed the attribution to Gerard Seghers and workshop on the basis of a high resolution photograph.
Delvingt remarks that the composition and the colours are typical of Seghers, showing the Saint looking down, displaying his ample stature, with characteristic modelling of his hair and beard along with the sculptural nature of the drapery. The style indicates a dating of the later 1630s when Seghers became most influenced by Van Dyck’s oeuvre, apparent in the beautiful brush movement for rendering the flesh of Peter’s arm and of the type of landscape depicted in the background. Delvingt comments further that the white shirt visible under Saint Peter’s robes is surprisingly very rapidly executed. However, as compared with another treatment of this subject by Seghers conserved in in the Louvre, Paris (inv. no. RF 1943-67) Delvingt detects some participation from Seghers’s workshop in the in areas of the Saint’s costume.
De Bruyn notes distinct similarities between Luis Tristan’s (1586–1624) treatment of the same subject now conserved in the Palacio Real de Riofrio, Segovia. Seghers, in common with his Flemish compatriots who fell under the spell of Caravaggio’s works in Rome, also worked for the Spanish Viceroy in Naples from 1611, before journeying to Madrid in 1616. Thus the present work remains an important testament to the versatility of this Antwerp master, who was as accomplished in executing tenebrous Caravaggesque works, as he was in assisting Peter Paul Rubens with the symphonies of gay colour engaged for the decorations of the Joyous Entry of Cardinal-Infante Ferdinand into the great Flemish entrepot in 1635.
Lieu et date de la vente Tableaux de Maîtres anciens I chez Dorotheum GmbH & Co KG
Palais Dorotheum, Dorotheergasse 17 1010 Vienne
08 juin 2021
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