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Title Courtship
Collection Holburne Museum of Art, Bath
Artist Sorgh, Hendrik Martensz. (Dutch painter, born 1609 or 1611, died 1670)
Date 1661 (dated)
Date Earliest probably about 1640
Date Latest 1670
Signed yes
Description Around 1660, Hendrik Martensz. Sorgh became interested in single-figure and two-figure compositions. In this work he has combined the theme of drinking with the amorous couple, and suggests both the sense of touch and taste. The composition of the two lovers repeats the formula developed by Sorgh during the 1640s. In terms of its technique, however, the panel displays features that are characteristic of the style of the early 1660s. It combines large areas painted in monochrome tonalities, often vaguely sketched in, with selective emphasis on central features of the composition, which is then finely modelled.
Current Accession Number A54
Former Accession Number 169; 1488; 89
Inscription front lr ' 1661 H. Sorgh'
Subject everyday life; figure (couple)
Measurements 42.0 x 46.4 cm cm (estimate)
Material oil on panel
Acquisition Details Bequeathed by Miss Mary Anne Barbara Holburne 1882.
Provenance Sir Thomas William Holburne, by 1867-74; by descent to Mary Anne Barbara Holburne (1802-1882), 1874.

Sorgh, from Rotterdam, held the official post of market barge captain for the Roetterdam-Dordrcht line from 1638 until his death. He inherited the name Sorgh from his father, also a market bargeman, who was nicknamed 'de sorch' meaning 'careful' after his manner of handling cargo. By 1636 or 1637, Sorgh was a master of the Guild of St Luke at Rotterdam, and signed paintings only exist from 1640, dated from 1641.

Attributions and inventory numbers: Holburne catalogue 1867, no. 168, as Zorg; Holburne catalogue 1887, no. 1488, as Zorg; Holburne catalogue 1936, no. 89, as Sorgh.

Rights Owner The Holburne Museum of Art, Bath
Author Rosie Broadley




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