Between Art and Kitsch: Overloon War Museum – Great Art – Between Art and Kitsch

Wednesday, May 4, 2022 from the Overloon War Museum, Karl Stimm receives a valuable Bronze Age lance tip at the table, Willem Jan Hoogsteder appreciates a copper painting with the Mary and Jesus painting and Joseph Estié a blue-and-white Chinese exhibit.

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a blue and white Chinese dish
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Image: lady under parasol with waiter
Designer: Cornelis Pronk
Origin: China
Date: 1735-1740
Material: porcelain
Dimensions: 51 cm diameter

The wife’s father died recently, this one is still in his house. Her mother went home from work every day and there she saw this dish. Eventually, her father bought the bowl for his mother, for Mother’s Day. About forty years ago. He then paid about 1,000 guilders for it. Mom then brought water with tealights in. Later, the bowl fell into disfavor, she pushed it under the cupboard. Until an appraiser came, he saw it under the closet. Then he was valued at 8,000 euros. That was in the early eighties. It would be a ‘Cornelis Pronk’ and rare in size. Now she wants to know if that’s true. Is it real or is it fake?

Joseph Estié: The Dutch artist Cornelis Pronk made the design for this dish. By order of VOC, he made watercolors with four different designs, which served as examples for the Chinese who painted porcelain in China. This parasol lady is the most popular design. The Chinese dignitary with his servant holding up an umbrella stands in a garden-like landscape with spoonbills. The original watercolor is still stored in the Rijksprentenkabinet.

In 1735, the first delivery of Pronk porcelain arrived in Holland. Most were in Imari porcelain, with iron red black and gold. It is also typical that the back is painted with insects. There was huge demand for the Pronk porcelain. The name refers to the creator of the design, but of course you could also show it off. The saucer has an insanely large size, which is very rare.

copper painting

Image: Mary with Jesus
Maker: Frans Francken
Origin: Antwerp
Date: 17th century
Material: copper
Measurements: 22 cm, 11 cm

Meneer is originally from The Hague, Statenkwartier, where he lived in a house with a number of boys. In one of the old, stately buildings in the street, a man lived alone without children. The man became seriously ill, and because he had no heirs, he wanted to get rid of his art. Everyone was allowed to bring something and the gentleman chose, among other things, this painting. That was now about fifty years ago. Sir thinks it’s a special painting, he’s also raised as a catholic, so it’s been hanging in his house for years. The value is unknown to him.

Willem Jan Hoogsteder: The Virgin and Child have been painted since the beginning of the painting. Started with Jan van Eyck and the most intimate representation in religious painting. Mary and child are recognized by the whole world, everyone can identify with this. Every woman understands this, but every man has also been a child. Here he still looks very innocent, but in the end he sacrifices his life. It is very Catholic, but at the same time very human.

The painting is not signed, but it comes closest to Frank Francken. Francken is a real family of painters from Antwerp, as was seen more often then, large families who all painted. Everyone collaborated then, one stood for the background, another family member painted Maria. The Francken family comes from the same time as Rubens.

It is painted on copper, which was more expensive than on panel or canvas. Copper is very flat, so very suitable for painting. This painting is also very nicely done. One can not see how old something is from copper, so it was often used for counterfeits. It has some damage so you should recover it.

lance tip

Origin: Kesteren
Dating: Bronze Age, about 1000 BC
Material: bronze
Dimensions: 22 cm long, 4 cm wide

Mister found this lance tip in a ditch near Kesteren in Betuwe. The ditch was renewed, the site was excavated. There was no water in it yet, a meter deep in the side the sun was shining on something blue sticking out. Mister went with metal detector and got a loud beep. He could get it out like that.

He regularly finds Roman pieces with the metal detector. He goes looking every week. Usually in Betuwe, where the ancient Roman road went, he lives nearby. He rarely meets them as cool as this lance tip. As it should be, he reported his find to PAN, Portable Antiques Nederland.

Karl Stimm: This lance tip is very tough. Some material has been used, it is professionally cast. They were found all over Europe, but such a thing is almost never found in the Netherlands. It is a textbook example of what it should be. The patina with the blue color is beautiful, it is due to the antimony that is in the soil. It dates from the Bronze Age. We do not really know how people fought back then, but this is at least a stabbing weapon. It must not have been a spear, for that the head is too expensive. It must have been on a stabbing weapon. It is important that we know the location. Normally the value will be around 300 euros, but because we know the origin, it is worth much more.

Sent on Wednesday, May 4, 2022 at 21 on NPO 1 (then the broadcast can be seen again on NPO Start)

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