OENE ROMKES DE JONGH (Makkum 1812 – Amsterdam 1896)
A View of the Zuiderspui with the Drommedaris in the City of Enkhuizen
signed in the lower right O.R. de Jongh
oil on panel
19 ½ x 23 ½ inches (49.1 x 59.5 cm.)
Private Collection, Florida since circa 1970 until the present time
Oene Romkes de Jongh was a cityscape painter of the Romantic School who continued the topographical tradition of Holland that began in the seventeenth century. He spent the majority of his career in Amsterdam. From 1884 until 1896 he worked in Nieuwer-Amstel. His specialty was the townscapes of Amsterdam and the port towns along the North Sea, often depicting these views in winter. He is further recorded as having painted only one landscape. Notably influential on his output were the works of his contemporaries Cornelis Springer and his pupil Adrianus Eversen. De Jongh took part in exhibitions of modern art in Amsterdam in 1862, 1868, 1871, 1876, and 1877. In Groningen he showed works in 1874 and 1877. The Jewish Historical Museum in Amsterdam and the Fries Scheepvaart Museum, Sneek own paintings by the artist.
This work depicts the Zuiderspui with the Drommedaris in Enkhuizen. The panel recreates a work of the same scene by Cornelis Springer that was painted in 1866. Springer preferred his scenes to be sun-filled and De Jongh followed suit capturing the town on a warm summer day. The fair-weather has made the city come alive with activity. A horse pulling a sledge upon which a young boy is perched is being driven through the center of the cobble stone street of the Zuiderspui. A few figures go about their business but the majority of the townsfolk have cast aside their baskets to converse in small groups. The time, readable from the clock in the gable of the Drommedaris, is 12:20 p.m. and the sun’s descent has just begun to cast decorative shadows on the ground. The Zuiderspui is one of the most picturesque streets in Enkhuizen consisting mainly of sixteenth and seventeenth century structures which today remain remarkably unchanged. The second house on the left-hand side of the panel is reputed to be the birthplace of the painter Paulus Potter. Further down the street is the drawbridge that leads to the Drommedaris, the most famous building in Enkhuizen. It is the southern gateway into the town and was built as a defensive structure at the entrance of the harbor whose construction was completed in 1659. In the mid-seventeenth century, Enkhuizen was at the peak of its power and one of the most important ports in the Netherlands. The harbor in our painting is just visible at the end of the street marked by two tall masts of a ship. In this panel the specificity of the site compounded by the exquisite rendering of architectural detail clarified by sunlight captures the charm of the Zuiderspui and the enduring appeal of Enkhuizen.
We are very grateful to Laurens Schoemaker of the Rijksbureau voor Kunsthistorische Documentatie, The Hague for his assistance in the writing of this entry.
 Pieter A. Scheen, “Oene Romkes de Jongh” in Lexicon Nederlandse Beeldende Kunstenaars 1750 – 1880, Uitgeverij Pieter A. Scheen BV, ‘s Gravenhage, 1981, p. 253.
 For Cornelius Springer’s A View of the Zuiderspui with the Drommedaris, Enkhuizen see Sotheby’s Amsterdam, April 23, 2001, lot 229 where it was sold for 1,500,000 guilder ($601,612).
 Written communication from Laurens Schoemaker of the Historical Topography Department of the Rijksbureau voor Kunsthistorische Documentatie, The Hague dated September 27, 2011.