Willem van Mieris - Joseph Interpreting Pharaoh's Dreams - image-1

Lot 2082 Dα

Willem van Mieris - Joseph Interpreting Pharaoh's Dreams

Auction 1231 - overview Cologne
18.11.2023, 11:00 - Old Masters and 19th Century, Part I
Estimate: 40.000 € - 50.000 €
Result: 50.400 € (incl. premium)

Willem van Mieris

Joseph Interpreting Pharaoh's Dreams

Oil on panel. 43 x 34 cm.

Willem van Mieris of Leiden is considered one of the most talented representatives of "Fijnschilder" (fine painter) painting, one of the artistic movements of the Dutch Golden Age that continued into the 18th century. The present painting, which is in excellent condition, is the counterpart of another work by Willem van Mieris depicting another scene from the Joseph story (Genesis 30-50), namely "Joseph and Potiphar's Wife", a painting dated 1694, which was sold at auction in New York in 2007 (Sotheby's, 26.01.2007, lot 436, $72,000).

Van Mieris also made small-format versions of both compositions in watercolor on parchment, which were offered by Bob Haboldt in 2001: “Joseph and Potiphar's Wife” is now in the Pierpont Morgan Library & Museum in New York, the second sheet apparently in a private collection. A further version of “Joseph and Potiphar’s Wife” by Willem van Mieris, also executed in oil, is part of the holdings of the Staatliche Kunsthalle in Karlsruhe.

The present painting probably also dates from the mid-1690s. It is defined by the stauesque calm emanating from the central figure of Joseph in the classic rhetorical pose. The counterpart, “Joseph and Potiphar’s Wife,” on the other hand, is characterised by movement and action.

We would like to thank Dr Albert Elen for his valuable support in cataloguing this work.


Anonymous auction De Zon/Gijselman, Amsterdam, 24.06.1964, lot 546. - Art dealer Euro Art Centre, Roermond, circa 1980. - Dr A. Wieg Fine Art, Amsterdam. - Acquired there in 1998 and since then in private ownership in the Netherlands.