Work Notes: Letter from Marijke C. de Kinkelder, RKD, 17 Nov. 1997: ‘I think it is rather Dutch than Flemish. Nightly fire-scenes were very popular in Rotterdam but these show more attention to the human reaction towards a fire. Aert van der Neer concentrates more on the effect of a fire in a nocturnal landscape. Therefore the artist of DPG14 is probably an anonymous follower of Van der Neer since none of his few followers that are known by name (his son Jan, Anthonie van Borrsum, Jan Meerhout and Gillis van Schyndel) can be considered as the author.’Typewritten note in file:‘Flemish School14. A Village on FirePreviously attributed to David Teniers II before 1880) or David I (from 1880), but there seems no connection with the style of either, nor is the subject to be found in their work. The poor state of preservation and low quality make an attribution simply to the Flemish school advisable. The English painter Julius Caesar ibbetson (d 1817) is known to have make forgeries of Teniers and the Literary Gazette describes how “arriving at a picture which seemed to attract Ibbetson’s particular regard, Mr Desenfans observed, “That, Mr Ibbetson, is a very beautiful example of the work of David Teniers”. There was a pause. Mr Desenfans requested Ibbetson’s opinion, whose answer, after another pause, was - “That picture, Sir? - that picture I painted..”Panel, 91/2 x 13 3/4 ins. (23.4 x 34.9 cm)PROVENANCE: Bourgeois Bequest, 1811 (as Teniers)LIT: W. T. Whitley, Art in England, 1800-1820, Cambridge, 1928, 277-8 (for Ibbetson story)’
Work Nationality: Flemish
Support: Oak panel
School: Flemish or Dutch
Provenance: London, Sir Francis Bourgeois, 1811; Bourgeois Bequest, 1811; 1813 inv. no. 131 (as Teniers).
Further Information: Catalogued as David Teniers the younger until 1880, and then as David Teniers the elder. The artist of "A Village on Fire" could perhaps be an anonymous follower of Aert van der Neer, a Dutch painter often depicting the effects of a fire in a nocturnal landscape.
Acquisition Method: Bourgeois, Sir Peter Francis (Bequest, 1811)