DANIËL SCHELLINKS (Amsterdam 1627 – 1701 Amsterdam)

Daniël Schellinks

Daniël Schellinks (Amsterdam 1627 – 1701 Amsterdam)

Path through a Forest with a Church in the Distance

Black chalk and grey wash on paper, black ink framing lines, countermark letters AV, 264 x 226 mm (10.4 x 8.9 inch); the edges laid down on paper mounting sheet with framing lines in gold leaf, and with inscription ‘D. Schellings

~ Anonymous sale, Christie’s, Amsterdam, 26 November 1984, lot 95, repr. plate 28
~ Private collection, United Kingdom

David Mandrella, La Pointe et l'Ombre. Dessins nordiques du musée de Grenoble XVIe-XVIIIe siècle, Paris/Grenoble 2014, p. 82, fig. 33.1.


A path winds its way through a wooded landscape almost completely devoid of human habitation. Only in the far background at the edge of the path a traveller is just visible, and beyond him the spire of a church. The sheet has been powerfully drawn and the trees and foliage are vibrant with life; the slight breeze of this spring day is almost perceptible.

The drawing has been traditionally identified as Daniël Schellinks (also known as Schelings and Schellincks). This rare artist is the brother of the more widely known Willem Schellinks (1626/27-1678), who is best known for his travels through England, France, Italy, Malta, Germany and Switzerland, and the drawings he produced on those journeys. Daniël’s works display the influence of the atmospheric draughtsmen Anthonie Waterloo (1610-1690) and Simon de Vlieger (c.1601-1653).

The present free and painterly sheet very much shows the influence of these two protagonists. A particularly related drawing by Schellinks, showing comparable handling of the foliage and tree groups, and of nearly identical dimensions, is preserved in the Kupferstichkabinett in Berlin (fig.).1

The authorship of this drawing has been confirmed by Dr Stijn Alsteens of the Metropolitan Museum, New York, to whom we are grateful.2


1. Black chalk and grey wash with white heightening on blue paper, 278 x 226 mm, monogrammed ‘D.S.’; see E. Bock and J. Rosenberg, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin : die niederländischen Meister : beschreibendes Verzeichnis sämtlicher Zeichnungen mit 220 Lichtdrucktafeln, Berlin 1930, no. 13874.
2. In an email of 6 April 2011.