Maida and George Abrams Collection, Boston © President and Fellows of Harvard College
Gallery Text

This serene landscape masterfully conveys the idle, leisurely mood of a warm spring day. A canopied rowboat, decorated with blooming foliage, is depicted carrying a boating party along a river. Tranquil waters seem to glisten in the sun, revealing soft reflections of trees and other greenery adorning the riverbank. Beyond adding a charming narrative detail to the scene, the small vessel is related to the festive boats that, in the 15th and 16th centuries, were often included in landscapes to indicate Spring (in series illustrating the four seasons) or May (in series illustrating the months of the year). An example of this can be seen in the background of Adriaen van de Venne’s Spring, also displayed in this gallery. While drawings by Vroom are rare today, his innovative compositions and a distinctively dense but delicate drawing technique make him inimitable among Dutch landscapists of his generation.

Identification and Creation
Object Number
TL41760.7
People
Cornelis Vroom, Dutch (Haarlem(?), Netherlands c.1591 - 1661 Haarlem, Netherlands)
Title
River Landscape
Classification
Drawings
Work Type
drawing
Date
c. 1622-1623
Culture
Dutch
Physical Descriptions
Medium
Brown ink on cream antique laid paper
Dimensions
18.1 x 24.2 cm (7 1/8 x 9 1/2 in.)
Inscriptions and Marks
  • Signed: Brown ink, lower right: CVR(in ligature)oom
  • inscription: verso, brown ink, pen: Vroom
  • inscription: verso, brown ink, pen: 1833 w63x (in the hand of William Esdaile)
  • watermark: Fragment of Strasbourg lily, WR below
Provenance
[Christie's (New York), London, 26 June 1840, lot 620]. WIlliam Esdaile, London (L. 2617, without his mark). [Sotheby's, London, 22 November 1974, lot 52]. Maida and George Abrams, Boston, 1974.
Acquisition and Rights
Credit Line
Maida and George Abrams Collection, Boston, Massachusetts
Object Number
TL41760.7
Division
European and American Art
Contact
am_europeanamerican@harvard.edu
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Publication History

George S. Keyes, Cornelis Vroom: Marine and Landscape Artist, Canaletto (Alphen aan den Rijn, 1975), vol. 1, p. 68; vol. 2, cat. no. D24. fig. 30

Curtis O. Baer, ed., Seventeenth Century Dutch Landscape Drawings and Selected Prints from American Collections, exh. cat., Vassar College Art Gallery (Poughkeepsie, NY, 1976), cat. no. 17, pp. 36-37, repr.

Pieter Biesboer, "[Review] Cornelis Vroom: Marine and Landscape Artist", Simiolus (1978 -1979), vol. 10, nos. 3-4, pp. 207-10, p. 209

"Forum: Cornelis Vroom Gentle Poet of Landscape", Drawing (1986), vol. 8, no. 4, pp. 78-9

Frederik J. Duparc, Landscape in Perspective: Drawings by Rembrandt and his Contemporaries, exh. cat., The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts (Montreal, 1988), cat. no. 101, p. 228, repr., and repr. color p. 47, fig. 101

William W. Robinson, Seventeenth-Century Dutch Drawings: A Selection from the Maida and George Abrams Collection, exh. cat., H. O. Zimman, Inc. (Lynn, MA, 1991), cat. no. 30, pp. 78-79, repr.

Daniel Gross, "Dutch Treats", Harvard Magazine (Cambridge, MA, September-October 1992), vol. 95, no. 1, pp. 41-45, repr. p. 44

William W. Robinson, Bruegel to Rembrandt: Dutch and Flemish Drawings from the Maida and George Abrams Collection, exh. cat., Harvard University Art Museums (Cambridge, MA, 2002), cat. no. 13, repr.

Exhibition History

Seventeenth Century Dutch Landscape Drawings and Selected Prints from American Collections, Vassar College Art Gallery, Poughkeepsie, 03/28/1976 - 05/07/1976

Landscape in Perspective: Drawings by Rembrandt and his Contemporaries, Harvard University Art Museums, Cambridge, 02/20/1988 - 04/03/1988; The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, Montreal, 04/15/1988 - 05/29/1988

Seventeenth-Century Dutch Drawings: A Selection from the Maida and George Abrams Collection, Rijksprentenkabinet, Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam, 02/23/1991 - 04/18/1991; Albertina Gallery, Vienna, 05/16/1991 - 06/30/1991; Pierpont Morgan Library, New York, 01/22/1992 - 04/22/1992; Harvard University Art Museums, Fogg Art Museum, Cambridge, 10/10/1992 - 12/06/1992

Bruegel to Rembrandt: Dutch and Flemish Drawings from the Maida and George Abrams Collection, British Museum, London, 06/13/2002 - 09/22/2002; Institut Néerlandais, Paris, 10/10/2002 - 12/08/2002; Harvard University Art Museums, Cambridge, 03/22/2003 - 07/06/2003

32Q: 2300 Dutch & Flemish, Harvard Art Museums, Cambridge, 09/08/2017 - 01/17/2018

The Art of Drawing in the Early Dutch Golden Age, 1590–1630: Selected Works from the Abrams Collection, Harvard Art Museums, Cambridge, 09/09/2017 - 01/14/2018

This record has been reviewed by the curatorial staff but may be incomplete. Our records are frequently revised and enhanced. For more information please contact the Division of European and American Art at am_europeanamerican@harvard.edu