Knoll above a pond



Schoonhoven c. 1624 – after 1651 Hamburg 

Knoll above a pond

Brush in gray and black ink over black chalk; brown ink framing lines.

116 x 191 mm (4-1/2 x 7-1/2 in).

WATERMARK: fragment, top half of Arms of Orange-Nassau, at upper center,

similar to Heawood no. 606 (dated after 1601). (R21)

CHAIN LINES: vertical, 24-26 mm.
PROVENANCE: Antiquariaat J. den Hartogh, Zeist, 1963.

Hans van Leeuwen, Amerongen (L. 2799a), his sale, Amsterdam, Christie’s, 24 November 1992, lot 145, acquired at the sale.

EXHIBITIONS: Robinson, Franklin W. and Peck, Sheldon. Fresh Woods and Pastures New: Seventeenth-Century Dutch Landscape Drawings from the Peck Collection. Chapel Hill/ Ithaca/ Worcester. 1999-2001. Published catalogue.

Herman Naiwincx is yet another example of a Dutch artist of great quality who is not well-known.  This is partly because he died in his twenties and his output is small;  it may also be due to the possibility, that he was involved in his family’s large tapestry-weaving factory at Schoonhoven.  Also, his work is quiet and understated;  his paintings are small, as are the two sets of eight landscape etchings that make up the bulk of his graphic work,  and they concentrate on cliffs and rivers, a copse of trees, that catch the late afternoon sunlight.  Although he seems not to have travelled to Italy, Naiwincx captures the limpid and serene atmosphere of the Italian countryside that so attracted Jan Both, Nicolaes Berchem, Jan Asselijn, and their contemporaries.

The present drawing is characterized by a gentle fall of light on still water, picking out a fragment of a wooden fence, with a massive stone bulwark built up beneath it.  This combination of strength and delicacy may be seen also in drawings by the artist in the Kunsthalle, Hamburg, the British Museum, and the Fondation Custodia, Paris, and the Rijksprentenkabinet, Amsterdam.