Antony Henstenburgh (Hoorn 1695–1781 Hoorn) Butterflies and Insects

Although the near-contemporary chronicler Jacob van Gool recorded that Herman Henstenburgh (1667-1726) had a draughtsman son called Anthonie, no securely attributable works were known until the emergence in the Van Pallandt sale in 1972 (Amsterdam, Mak van Waay, 26 September of that year) of a group of signed works by the artist. Were it not because of the different monogram with which these sheets are signed, the drawings might well have been taken for works by the elder Henstenburgh, and it is possible that many unsigned drawings by Anton are still unjustly considered to be by his father.

Herman Henstenburgh, the notable still-life and natural history artist from Hoorn, established his town as a reputed centre for this type of very distinctive, highly detailed and decorative watercolours and gouaches, many of them representing butterflies, such as the sheets conserved in Braunschweig, Herzog Anton Ulrich-Museum. His son Anton, who executed and inscribed the present drawing on vellum, was famous to be both an artist and a pastry-baker, just like his father Herman. 

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