J. van Kessel
circa 1620 Antwerp - circa 1661 Amsterdam (?)
Still Life with Plums, Hazelnuts, Grapes and Melons
Oil on copper. 13 x 23.5 cm.
Klaus Ertz, Lingen, 13.9.2013
For this artist, cf.: Klaus Ertz und Christa Nitze-Ertz: Die Maler Jan van Kessel: Jan van Kessel der Ältere, Jan van Kessel der Jüngere, Jan van Kessel der „Andere“. Kritische Kataloge der Gemälde, Lingen 2012.
This well preserved copper panel is one of the rare surviving works of the Antwerp based still life painter Jan van Kessel. The artist in question is not, however, Jan van Kessel the Elder (1626-1679), known for his depictions of insects, or his son Jan van Kessel the Younger (1654-1708), but an entirely separate artist of the same name. The present Jan van Kessel is recorded as a member of the guild of Saint Luke around the same time as the former and as is called by Klaus Ertz as "Jan van Kessel the Other". He describes this "other" artist's painting as being of the same quality as those of the Elder and the Younger, and even considers it better in some works. Thirty five pieces can currently be attributed to this painter. The present still life, which Klaus Ertz compares with works in the American Art Association (New York) and the Hermitage (St. Petersburg), shows various vessels and fruit arranged artfully upon a pale stone slab before a dark background.