Seascape with a High Cliff

Jan Brueghel the Elder (Flemish, 1568-1625)

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This painting is considered one of Brueghel's earliest surviving works and was probably painted in the 1590s when he was living in Italy. Like many of Jan's early landscapes, this one is painted from a high vantage point reminiscent of the panoramic "world landscape" format favored by his father, Pieter Brueghel the elder.

Baron Henri-Marie-Bruno-Joseph-Léon Kervyn de Lettenhove [1856-1928], St. Michel-lez-Bruges and Brussels; by descent to Colette H. Dawson (Mrs. John W. Dawson), Zionsville, Indiana, from 1948 {1}; purchased in 1960 by Mrs. George Henry Alexander Clowes [1885-1967], Indianapolis;{2} the Clowes Fund Collection, 1967-2010 and on long-term loan to the Indianapolis Museum of Art since 1971 (C10014); given to the Indianapolis Museum of Art in 2010.

{1} Upon the death of Baron Henri Kervyn de Lettenhove in 1928, his estate was divided between his wife (who died in 1934) and one surviving child, the Vicomtesse Roger le Sergeant d'Hendecourt (died 1942). The four children of the latter were minors on the death of their father; two died in 1945, and the estate remained undivided until 1948, when it was inherited by Colette Dawson and her sister. Correspondence from John W. Dawson to Allen W. Clowes, 23 September 1960 (IMA, Clowes Collection Archive).
{2} Sales agreement, 19 August 1960 (IMA, Clowes Collection Archive).

Object Information

Jan Brueghel the Elder (Flemish, 1568-1625)
creation date
about 1591
oil on copper
4 x 4-1/2 in. (unframed)
7-1/4 x 7-3/4 x 1-1/4 in. (framed)
accession number
credit line
The Clowes Collection
Public Domain
European Painting and Sculpture Before 1800

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