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A Group of Masterpieces from the Besselaar Collection are Sold for $2.8 Million
Andreas Schelfhout, Numerous skaters and a horse-sledge by a refreshment stall, 96 by 145 cm., estimate €280,000 – 450,000. Photo: Sotheby's.
AMSTERDAM.- On Dec. 13th at Sotheby’s Amsterdam, during the sale of 19th Century European Paintings, a group of exceptional masterpieces from the Besselaar Collection, are sold for a total of €2.1 million/ £1.8 million/ $2.8 million, a figure within the pre-sale expectations of €1.4 million – 2.1 million.

The star of the evening was Andreas Schelfhout’s, Winterscape with skaters, one of the finest paintings appeared on the market of the artist. Four clients on the phone and two in the room began to battle. In all, it took almost 5 minutes, when the widding bidder, a buyer from Europe bought the lot at €480,750/ $640,162, well in excess of pre-sale expectations of €280,000 – 450,000. Painted in 1857, Winterscape with skaters is without any doubt one of the artist’s masterpieces. The wonderfully detailed figures, some gathered around a refreshment stall, others cheerfully skating, and the superb treatment of the translucent ice with its scratches and reflections have been rendered with great natural quality, bathing in a subtle light. The painting didn’t appear on the market since decades and is a superlative example of Schelfhout's unsurpassed virtuosity.

The highlights of the Collection Besselaar:
•The second highest price of the Collection was for Lot 4, Bar, Barend Conelis Koekkoek’s end Conelis Koekkoek’s Travellers with cattle and donkey on a sunlit path with cattle and donkey on a sunlit path, estimated at €280,000 – 450,000 is sold for €360,750.

•Lot 6 Lot 6, The Gemeenlandshuis and the Old Church, Delft, in summer by Cornelis Springer by Cornelis Springer (1817 (1817 (1817-1891) 1891) was also one of the highlights with an estimate of €150,000 – 200,000, the painting is sold for €288,750

•Lot 7, Figures conversing in the streets of a Dutch town by Willem Koekkoek (1839 by Willem Koekkoek (1839 – 1895) and 1895) and Hermanus Koekkoek. Hermanus Koekkoek sold for €240,750 and doubled the estimated price of €100,000 – 150,000.

Speaking after the sale, Mrs. Eveline van Oirschot, Chairman of Sotheby’s Amsterdam, said: ‘This very successful total result for the masterpieces of the Besselaar Collection shows us again the strong demand for paintings with strong provenance and good quality.’

Mr and Mrs Besselaar Besselaar Besselaar
In the late 1980s, Hein and Toni Besselaar began to collect Dutch Romantic paintings. Having both grown up in Holland, their intention was to establish a collection of Dutch nineteenth-century paintings that represented everyday life in their country at that time. With a superb eye for quality and working in conjunction with a number of well established art advisers like, Simon Levie, former director of the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, and the late Leslie Smith of Wassenaar, Hein and Toni built a premier collection that includes the outstanding works by the most important Dutch Romantic artists.

The selection of twelve masterpieces represented all the important artists and genres of the Dutch Romantic School: A panoramic landscape by Barend Cornelis Koekkoek, a lively winter scene by Andreas Schelfhout, a flower still life by Arnoldus Bloemers and several town views by Cornelis Springer, Willem and Hermanus Koekkoek, among others.


* Pre-sale estimates do not include buyer’s premium



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