Gerrit Adriaenszoon Berckheyde

Netherlands, b.1638, d.1698

A View in Cologne with St. Gereon's Basilica

  • 1670-1698
  • Oil on canvas
  • Purchased with assistance from the Ballantyne Bequest, 1972
  • 600 x 530 x 105mm
  • 72/06

Gerrit Berckheyde’s major contribution to Dutch painting was as a champion of the cityscape, a new genre that developed from the mid 1600s. Haarlem-based Berckheyde began making paintings of Cologne (Köln) in about 1670, from sketches made in Germany in the 1650s. Several works featured St Gereon’s Basilica, a Romanesque church completed in the early thirteenth century.

(Out of Time, 23 September 2023 – 28 April 2024)

Exhibition History

earlier labels about this work
  • Treasury: A Generous Legacy, 18 December 2015 – 4 December 2016

    Gerrit Berckheyde’s contribution to the Dutch Golden Age of painting was as an exponent of the cityscape, which became a new genre from the mid seventeenth-century. Berckheyde was Haarlem-based, and began producing paintings of Cologne in about 1670, from sketches made in the 1650s. He painted a series of works depicting St. Gereon’s Basilica, a large and distinctive Romanesque style church completed in the thirteenth century.

    This painting was purchased through a significant bequest made in 1953 from an insurance settlement from the estate of William Ballantyne (1864–1934), whose art collection had been largely destroyed in the 1947 Ballantyne’s department store fire.

  • For many years this work was attributed to Philips Wouwermans (1619-1668). The work was displayed with this label when Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetū opened in May 2003:

    Philips Wouwermans painted many hunting scenes and in this work he shows noblemen setting off for the hunt. The inclusion of a white horse is typical of his work, so much so that it became almost a signature of his style. Wouwermans has paid careful attention to detail and the brooding darkness of the scene creates a sense of drama. He has used very fine brushwork, typical of many realist Dutch artists of the period. Born in Haarlem, Wouwermans was part of a successful family of artists. For most of his life he lived in Haarlem where he is reputed to have studied under Frans Hals (c.1580 -1666). Wouwermans travelled to Hamburg c.1638 when his family objected to his marriage to a Catholic, however he returned to Haarlem in 1640 and became a member of the Painters Guild in the same year. He was prolific and established a very successful practice. He specialised in the representation of battles involving cavalry.