Description & Technical information

The tentative attribution of the present sheet to Ferdinand Bol is based on stylistic and technical similarities with a handful of small-scale portrait drawings by the artist, notably a drawing of a man in the collection of the Ossolineum in Wroclaw, Poland, which is in turn a study for Bol’s half-length painted Portrait of a Man, signed and dated 1647, in the Staatliches Museum in Schwerin. Other comparable drawings by Bol include A Scholar Seated in his Study in the Staatliche Graphische Sammlung in Munich, An Old Man Seated at a Table, also in Munich, and a Young Woman Playing the Lute in the Liberna Collection at the Draiflessen Collection in Mettingen, Germany.

We are grateful to Martin Royalton-Kisch for his first-hand study of the present sheet and his assistance in determining its speculative attribution to Bol. Dr. Royalton-Kisch has dated this drawing to c.1635-1642; a time in which Rembrandt had a large number of pupils and assistants working in his style, of which Bol was among the most gifted.

Provenance: Private collection, England
Anonymous sale, Gloucestershire, Prinknash Abbey Park, Chorley’s Auctioneers, 25 July 2023, lot 720 (as Dutch School, 18th Century).