Five beautiful etchings depicting the Parable of the prodigal son (Luke 15:11–32). All the scenes take place in the open air, allowing the artist to invent architectures inspired to Italian buildings and landscapes from the same period. Plates 1 and 2 have the same provenance, whereas the other three do not show any collectors’ marks. Two prints from the set (1st and 3rd) were signed by the nephew of the artist, Jean Baptist de Wael
Plate 1: The Prodigal Son leaving his Father’s House [Luke 15:13]. A young man about to mount a horse in front of a large house at centre, while an elderly man addresses him, other family-members behind the pair, two horsemen waiting at left; second state with lettering below: ‘Cornelis de Wael invenit / Martinus van den Enden excud’. On verso light trace of Malenza’s mark, other notes in pencil and an unidentified mark.
Plate 2: The prodigal son in a garden along with other young men and women, making marry, eating, drinking making music and dancing. On the right a fountain, on the left a group of musicians and a descending garden towards the background. On verso collector’s mark of Pietro Malenza (L.2101), dating 1860. Possibly, at least these two impressions were sold in the third auction of his collection, in 1867: 26th March and following days. “Estampes anciennes de l’école des Pays-Bas. 1577 nos. Plus haut prix 120 Rth. pour la Pièce de cent florins de Rembrandt.” [cfr.: Fondation Custodia].
Plate 3: the Prodigal Son is chased out of the brothel by a group of women and some men. On the right two men are leaving in the opposite direction. Towards the background a square with a fountain. A fine white line in the middle marks an unfortunate pinching of the paper in the process of printing. However this line is hardly visible. First state, before lettering;
Plate 4: The Prodigal Son as a swineherd [Luke 15:15-16]. A young shepherd in lumps standing at left and looking at the sky, a dog at his feet, a donkey and a goat behind him, other animals at right, a farm-yard in background; first state with signature of de Wael; after Cornelis de Wael. Lettered in lower margin: ‘C.D. Wael inv.’ and ‘Jan Baptist de Wael Fecit 1658’;
Plate 5: The Return of the Prodigal Son [Luke 15:20]. A young man in lumps kneeling in front of an elderly man wearing an ermine coat, two men putting a cape around his shoulders, the rest of the family behind them, a dog and a man holding a calf in lower left, an arch in right background; first state with signature of de Wael; after Cornelis de Wael. Lettered in lower margin: “Cor. D. Wael inuentor” and “Jan Baptist de Wael Fecit”.
Etching and some engraving on paper; first two plates trimmed on plate mark, total: ca. 196 x 298 mm; last three with some margin; total: ca. 219 x 317 mm; plate 4 suffers of thin paper on the top right plate mark. All the impressions are very bright. Interesting are also the impurities of the plates visible on paper due to ink transfer. Hollstein 1, Dutuit p. 564, Bartsch Vol. V, p. 1, Wurzbach p. 837
Incl. VAT € 3630,00
Excl. VAT € 3.000,00