Johannes Jansz. Collaert (Amsterdam c.1622-1678 Amsterdam) Grotto of Neptune, Tivoli (c.1646)

With a tiny oeuvre and only three signed drawings known, Johannes Jansz. Collaert may be regarded as an utmost scarce artist of whom very little is known. His drawings follow in the tradition of Bartholomeus Breenbergh, Cornelis Poelenburch and Guillam du Gardijn. Collaert travelled to Italy in 1646 with loaned money and returned the same year or early 1647 after which he marries in Amsterdam.[1]

The typically dark repoussoir on the lower right of our sheet which shows a grotto overgrown with vegetation bathing in abundant sunlight amidst the day strongly reminds of the repoussoir seen in the Tivoli drawing in Hamburg.[2]

Tivoli with it's waterfalls, grotto's and steep valleys was a most popular visited location for Italianates and the point of view overlooking the building on the upper left suggest a grotto probably in the valleys of Tivoli where Collaert drew his signed and dated views of Tivoli, although this remains unconfirmed.

The five drawings on Tivoli's hills, temples, ruins, waterfalls and grottoes in the collection of the Museum of Fine Arts Budapest show great comparisons, especially the "Waterfall at Tivoli with Grottoes" which also has a rocky repoussoir in the lower right corner and a similar perspective and composition.[3]

The subject and composition of our drawing can be closely compared to two later drawings previously attributed to Daniël Schellinks and nowadays given to Willem Schellinks.[4][5]



[1] Peter Schatborn, Tekenen van warmte, 17-de eeuwse Nederlandse tekenaars in Italië. Waanders/Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam, 2001. p. 139-140.

[2] View on Tivoli. Hamburger Kunsthalle, Hamburg , inv./ 21807

[3] Waterfall at Tivoli with Grottoes. Museum of Fine Arts, Budapest, inv. no. K.58.845

[4] Koninklijke Musea voor Schone Kunsten van België, Brussels , inv./ De Grez 4060/3260

[5] Koninklijke Musea voor Schone Kunsten van België, Brussels , inv./ De Grez 4060/3261






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