Mathys Schoevaerdts - Fishmarket in a Southern Port City

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Mathys (Mathijs) Schoevaerdts (1665/1667- after 1702) 

Fishmarket in a Southern Port City

oil on canvas
canvas dimensions 17.71 x 25.98 inches (45 x 66 cm)
frame dimensions 24.80 x 33.07 inches (63 x 84 cm)

Expertise:
This painting comes with a certificate (photocopy) from Ellen Bernt, stating that it is "a flawless and characteristic work by the Brussels landscape and figure painter Mathys Schoevaerdts."

Provenance:
Im Kinsky Kunst Auktionen Vienna, 2010-09, Alte Mesiter Sale, lot 2, as Mathys Schoevaerdts;
Dorotheum Vienna, Alte Meister, 2015-12, Lot nr 79, as Mathys Schoevaerdts;
A private collection in Sweden, it was acquired on the sale above.  

Essay:
"Fishmarket in a Southern Port City" is an exquisite painting by the renowned Flemish artist Mathys Schoevaerdts, celebrated for his vibrant landscapes and lively genre scenes. This captivating work, created in the late 17th century, is a testament to Schoevaerdts' skilful blend of realism and idealism, embodying the serene and bustling atmosphere of a southern European port city.

The painting masterfully captures a bustling fish market set against the backdrop of a picturesque port city. The scene is rich with architectural details, including classical arches and a stately building, possibly indicating the city's historical significance and southern European influence.

Schoevaerdts populates the scene with a myriad of figures, each engaged in various activities typical of a lively market day. Fishermen, merchants, and townsfolk animate the foreground, their detailed and individualized poses adding depth and narrative to the composition. The meticulous depiction of everyday life offers a glimpse into the cultural and social dynamics of the time.

The landscape is characterized by rolling hills and a calm, expansive water body, possibly a river or coastal inlet. The distant mountains and the serene sky, painted in delicate hues of blue and pink, evoke a sense of tranquility and timeless beauty. This harmony between the natural and built environments is a hallmark of Schoevaerdts' style.

The use of light in this painting is particularly striking. The warm, golden light of the setting sun bathes the entire scene, casting long shadows and highlighting the textures and details of the architecture and figures. The palette of soft blues, greens, and warm earth tones enhances the painting's inviting and nostalgic feel.

The Artist:
Mathys Schoevaerdts (c. 1665/1667 – after 1702) was a Flemish painter whose works were highly sought after in his lifetime. He trained under Adriaen Frans Boudewijns and became a master of the Brussels Guild of Saint Luke in 1690. Schoevaerdts' work, influenced by Jan Brueghel the Elder, is noted for its blend of detailed realism and idyllic scenes, often imbued with a sense of pastoral happiness.

Schoevaerdts' oeuvre is celebrated for its intricate landscapes filled with lively scenes of peasant life, kermesses, and fantastical elements. Although little is known about his personal life, his legacy is preserved through his works that continue to captivate art enthusiasts and collectors. His unique approach to composition and his ability to blend naturalistic detail with imaginative elements have earned him a distinguished place in the history of Flemish painting.

 

 

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Mathys Schoevaerdts - Fishmarket in a Southern Port City - CLASSICARTWORKS
Mathys Schoevaerdts - Fishmarket in a Southern Port City - CLASSICARTWORKS
Mathys Schoevaerdts - Fishmarket in a Southern Port City - CLASSICARTWORKS
Mathys Schoevaerdts - Fishmarket in a Southern Port City - CLASSICARTWORKS
Mathys Schoevaerdts - Fishmarket in a Southern Port City - CLASSICARTWORKS
Mathys Schoevaerdts - Fishmarket in a Southern Port City - CLASSICARTWORKS
Mathys Schoevaerdts - Fishmarket in a Southern Port City - CLASSICARTWORKS
Mathys Schoevaerdts - Fishmarket in a Southern Port City - CLASSICARTWORKS
Mathys Schoevaerdts - Fishmarket in a Southern Port City - CLASSICARTWORKS
Mathys Schoevaerdts - Fishmarket in a Southern Port City - CLASSICARTWORKS