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  • Cornelius van Leemputten & Jan David Col Painting of Sheep with Shepherd
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"Shepherd w/ his Sheep" by Cornelius van Leemputten and Jan David Col

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Oil on canvas, "Shepherd and resting dog watching the flock", signed lower left and inscribed verso
Item # 603GSI10P

A finely detailed unframed scene of a middle age shepherd watching over his sheep as they graze over an open pasture, the calming scene captures the essence of a relaxing afternoon. The open sky is bright and almost free of cloud cover, a horizon that is devoid of complication or troubles. In an era overrun by mass production, these moments were in high demand and lend a certain serenity - a window to a different time and of better possibilities. It is a collaborative work, the majority of the scene painted by Cornelius van Leemputten while the seated shepherd is painted by Jan David Col - this is noted in period script on the back of the canvas, both artists attesting to which portion of the scene they personally completed. The sheep are painted with Leemputten’s self-evident mastery - crisp and carefully detailed, the high chroma grass a distinct contrast against the dirty thick curls of wool.  A most fine acquisition. 

Cornelius van Leemputten was a self-taught artist, practiced primarily by painting landscapes and scenes of Antwerp and the surrounding areas.  The demand for paintings of nostalgic countryside scenes among the growing middle class brought considerable success to Leemputten, who grew to specialize in farmyard scenes and focused particularly on studies of sheep.  He was awarded gold medal at exhibition in Ghent in 1883, in Edinburgh 1886, Port Adelaide in 1887 and Berlin in 1896.  He was awarded with the honor of Chevalier de l’orde de Leopold in Belgium 1895.  His brother, Frans Leemputten, also pursued a similar passion for animal studies.

Jan David Col was born in Antwerp in 1822, a painter of genre scenes of relationship, excelling at representaion of complex figures.  He was trained at the Academy of Antwerp and first exhibited in 1846.  He is well known for his collaborations, particularly with Eugéne Remy Maes, Constant Boon and Cornelius van Leemputten.

Other marks/inscriptions: inscribed in period script verso “Je declare que le tableau ci contre representant un paysage avec moutons est peint par moi, Corn. Van Leemputten / Je declare avoir peint la figure ci contre, David Col Antwerp"

"Dictionary of Belgian Painters Born Between 1750 and 1875", Berko and Berko, 1981, p. 703-704

Prior Sale Results:

  • Dorotheum, 16 April 2013, Lot 48, Cornelius Van Leemputten and Jan David Col oil on canvas, two figures with resting sheep, achieved $ 14,000 USD
  • Doyle New York, 6 May 2004, lot 5042, Cornelius Van Leemputten and Jan David Col oil on canvas, shepherd leaning on staff with sheep, achieved $ 11,590 USD [includes buyer’s premium]
  • Doyle New York, 30 November 2005, lot 1095, Cornelius Van Leemputten, shepherd leading sheep down snowy path, achieved $ 12,250 USD [includes buyer’s premium]
  • Christies New York, 9 June 2010, Sale 2322, Lot 144, Jan David Col, figures and dog interior scene, achieved $ 10,000 USD

Measurements:  20 1/4” H x 27 3/8” W

Condition Report:
Light surface craquelure.  Recently professionally conserved: linen strips around edges, otherwise retaining original lining, cleaned; some inpainting visible under UV along frame edges and around shepherd’s staff and shoulders, a few other small touch ups - perhaps 5% of surface (see uv images). No frame. In “presentation-ready” condition.