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Seattle Art Museum (SAM)

Church Interior

Photo: Paul Macapia

Church Interior

ca. 1670

Emanuel de Witte

Dutch, 1617-1692

To meet the expanding art market of the seventeenth century, Dutch artists often specialized in new genres such as still lifes, landscapes, portraits and church interiors. In this invented interior, observe how De Witte uses light to create both architectural volume and a sense of spirituality. If you bring a different kind of attention to the image, you can watch it become a series of flat, overlapping rectangles, anticipating the twentieth-century abstractions of another Dutch painter, Piet Mondrian.
Oil on wood
18 7/8 x 16 1/2 in. (48 x 41.9 cm)
Samuel H. Kress Collection
Provenance: Lady Cosmo Bevan (Marion L. Sulivan), Dorking, Surrey, England; Baroness Anne Beauclerk Dundas Dickson-Poynder Islington, London, Chippenham Wiltshire, and Highland Scotland; [her sale, Sotheby's, London, June 20, 1951, no. 41A]; [David M. Koetser Gallery, 1951-1954]; purchased from Koetser by Samuel H. Kress Foundation, New York, January 20, 1954; Seattle Art Museum, since 1954, accessioned 1961
Photo: Paul Macapia
Not currently on view


Exhibition HistoryRaleigh, North Carolina, North Carolina Museum of Art, A Gift to America: Masterpieces of European Painting from the Samuel H. Kress Collection, Feb. 5 - Apr. 24, 1994 (Houston, Texas, The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, May 22 - Aug. 14, 1994; Seattle, Washington, Seattle Art Museum, Sept. 15 - Nov. 20, 1994; San Francisco, California, The Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, Dec. 17, 1994 - Mar. 4, 1995). Text by David Steel et al. Cat. no. 42, pp. 64-66.
Published ReferencesSuida, William and Richard Fuller. European Paintings and Sculpture from the Samuel H. Kress Collection. Seattle, Wash.: Seattle Art Museum, 1954; p. 70, reproduced p. 71.

Manke, Ilse, Emanuel De Witte 1617-1692. Amsterdam, Netherlands: Menno Hertzberger and Company, 1963; p. 107, no. 123

Ishikawa, Chiyo. The Samuel H. Kress Collection at the Seattle Art Museum. Seattle, Wash.: Seattle Art Museum, 1997; pp. 64-66, reproduced fig. 42.

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