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Details about  Jan DE BISSCHOP ESPISCOPIUS 1628-71 Paradigmata Graphices Maarten van Heemskerck

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Jan DE BISSCHOP ESPISCOPIUS 1628-71 Paradigmata Graphices Maarten van Heemskerck
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24 Apr, 2013 20:31:14 BST
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Item location:
The Hague, Netherlands

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Item specifics

Self-Representing Artist?: No Medium: Etching/ Engraving
Original/ Repro: Original Etching/ Engraving Type: Line
Signed?: Signed Subject: People & Portraits
Type: Antique
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Dear art lovers,

I am leaving London to live in the Netherlands, where my collection will be located for a while.
I won’t give up my hobby and will continue to sell interesting items on Ebay UK. So trust me to be as reliable as always!

Seven draped female statues, arranged in two horizontal rows, the top row comprising

three complete statues, the bottom row four views of three fragmentary ones without heads


By Jan de Bisschop, also known as Johannes Episcopius (1628–1671),

was a lawyer, who became a Dutch Golden Age painter and engraver.

According to the RKD he learned to draw from Bartholomeus Breenbergh, and he influenced

in his turn Jacob van der Ulft. Both Ulft and Bisschop were born into good families and were examples of painters

who practised art more for pleasure than for a living. Bisschop was a founding member of the Confrerie Pictura

and produced two books in the 1670s meant as instructional material for young artists. These were based on

his own copies from classical artists, but also copies from the Rome-traveller, Pieter Donker. One was 112 prints

that was produced in the years 1668-1669 as the Signorum Veterum Icones (Dutch title: Afbeeldingen van antieke beelden),

and the other was printed in 1671 as Paradigmata Graphices variorum Artificum (Dutch title: Voor-beelden der

Teken-Konst van verscheyde Meesters).

According to Houbraken he was a lawyer for the Dutch court, and did a great service to the arts with his instructional

drawings copied from the artists Tintoretto, Jacopo Bassano, Annibale Carracci (Karats), Paolo Veronese, Rubens, and Anthony van Dyck.


(Source : Wikipedia)


After intermediary drawings by Maarten van Heemskerck or Marten Jacobsz Heemskerk van Veen (1 June 1498 – 1 October 1574),

Dutch portrait and religious painter, known for his depictions of the Seven Wonders of the World.


Etching on white laid paper,

with a watermark representing the coat of arms of Amsterdam.


(Source: Wikipedia)

(Contrast emphasized to make the watermark visible)

Signed in the plate with the artist’s Latin monogram, JE, for Johannes Episcopius.

Lettering in lower left corner of the image: Heemskerk ex marmore antiq

For the intermediary draughtsman Maarten van Heemskerck



Sheet: approx. 310 mm x 207 mm

Platemark and image: approx. 220 mm x 130 mm


Condition: As it is, several signs of age, to be expected for a print this old, please see scans and note:

Important vertical crease on the left side, where all pages were bound. The print can easily be re centred,

but it would make it difficult to be used to restore a more complete version of Paradigmata graphices variorum artificum.

Along this vertical crease: some tears, yellowing, and in the reverse remains of glue in the reverse.

Otherwise wide margins, deep platemark, plain white reverse.


Origin: Paradigmata graphices variorum artificum, plate 36.

Most probably from the 1st edition, The Hague, 1671

(The print came as a part of the remains of a copy from the first edition,

according to the frontpiece page, also present, see scan below)

Bisschop’s Paradigmata Graphices have played an important role in late 17th century Dutch art,

as it provided artists with excellent examples and models: "[De Bisschop] certainly depended o

n drawings by other artists, as well as the illustrations from François Perrier’s ‘Icones’ (Paris, 1645) for his two

influential series of prints in book form, the ‘Signorum veterum icones’ (1668-9), with 100 prints after classical sculptures,

dedicated to Johannes Wtenbogaard and

Constantijn Huygens, and the ‘Paradigmata graphices variorum artificum’ (1671), with prints after old master

drawings and dedicated to Jan Six. Some of the classical sculptures reproduced in de Bisschop’s ‘Icones’ were

from the seventeenth-century collections of Gerrit Uylenburgh and Hendrik Scholten,to which de Bisschop had

direct access; most of the old master drawings in the ‘Paradigmata’ were based on works by Italians: Annibale Carracci,

Domenichino, Francesco Salviati, Cavaliere d’Arpino, Giulio Romano and others. The sequence of the ‘Icones’ adhered

strictly to the classical tradition: first the individual parts of the body were illustrated (this section was left unfinished

at de Bisschop’s premature death), then complete figures, followed by poses and suggestions for compositions with more

than one figure. The prints were intended to provide artists with examples of ideal poses. From the paintings of Adriaen

van der Werrff and Nicolaes Verkolje, it is clear just how influential these studies were in the development of Dutch

classical painting during the late 17th century" (Ger Luijten)


Note by the British Museum’s curator about the plate:

“Two different drawings by van Heemskerck most probably served as the immediate models for the statues on the

lower row of the etching. The arrangement was de Bisschop's own. No intermediary drawings by De Bisschop have

come to light. According to Van Gelder the second figure in the top row is the Roman more than life-size statue in the

Boboli Gardens in Florence in reverse. The third figure on the top row was traditionnally identified as a version of

the 'Artemis Brauronia' by Praxiteles (this identification is now debated). This could perhaps be the replica now in

the Galleria Doria Pamphilj in Rome. The first figure from the left on the lower row, is most probably the 'Cesi Semele'

in an unrestored state, now in the Museo Capitolino in Rome. The etching shows the statue in reverse with both the

hands and the head missing. De Bisschop's immediate prototype was probably the figure on the left in Van Heemskerck's

drawing with 'Three female statues' in the 'Berlin Sketchbook' (I, fol. 33 recto). The third statue from the right is thought

to be a Roman copy of a prototype which may have belonged to a group of Muses, attributed to Philiskos of Rhodos ans

dated to the second century B.C. Van Gelder believes the etching to be after a drawing by Melchior Lorck, now in the

Copenhagen Printroom. The last figure from the left on the bottom row is also believed to be after the 'Three female statues'

by Van Heemskerck in the 'Berlin Sketchbook' (I, fol. 33 recto).”

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