Old Master Paintings, Drawings, and British Portraits


JACOB SALOMONSZ. VAN RUYSDAEL (Haarlem 1629/1630 – Haarlem 1681)

The Cascade

signed in monogram with the initials JvR in the lower left

oil on panel

33 x 45 ½ inches          (83.8 x 115.6 cm.)


Gustav von Gerhardt, Budapest

Sammlung des Königl. Ungar. Hofrats Gustav Gerhardt, Budapest, Rudolph Lepke’s Kunst-Auctions-Haus, Berlin, November 10, 1911, lot 101, illustrated p. 7 (as by Jacob van Ruisdael)

Otto Kuhn, Brno, Czechoslovakia (1865–1927), and thus by descent to

Mme. Vve. Kuhn, Brno, Czechoslovakia

Tableaux anciens: collection Mme. Vve. Kuhn à Brunn, Frederik Muller & Cie, Amsterdam, June 4, 1929, lot 56, illustrated

Alfred (1883–1961) and Hermine (1889–1962) Stiassni, Brno, Czechoslovakia, until 1938; thence London, 1938–1940; Los Angeles, 1940–1962; and thus by descent to

Suzanne Stiassni Martin & Leonard Martin, San Francisco, until 2005, and by descent to

Private Collection, until the present time



K.E. Simon, “Jacob Salomonsz van Ruisdael” in Thieme-Becker, Allgemeines Lexikon der Bildenden Kunstler, Veb E.A. Seeman Verlag, Leipzig, volume XXIX, 1935 p. 194

Hofstede de Groot archives, Rijksbureau voor Kunsthistorische Documentatie, The Hague, “Jacob Salomonsz. van Ruysdael”, no. 1466353



Brunn, Künstlerhaus, Exhibition of Old Masters, 1925


Jacob Salomonsz. van Ruysdael was the son of Salomon van Ruysdael and the cousin of Jacob van Ruisdael. It is believed that he entered the artists’ guild of Haarlem in 1664, the same year he married Geertruyt Pieters of Alkmaar. By 1666 he had moved to Amsterdam, where he remained for almost the rest of his life. In 1667 he was named in the will of Jacob van Ruisdael as an executor. In 1673 he remarried with Annetje Jans Colgns and, interestingly, during this period also ran a hosiery shop. In 1681, he left Amsterdam to return to Haarlem, where he died.[1]

Such is the paltry information known about the artist. The rest must be gleaned from his work. The later works of his father Salomon played a strong influence on Jacob Salomonsz.’s predilection for wooded landscapes. Characteristic of his work is the strong brown coloration of the woods, accompanied by alternating green and brown landscapes under intense blue skies with conspicuous cumulus clouds. Often, shepherds with their flocks add a serene quality of timelessness to these compositions. His cousin Jacob exerted a further undeniable influence, particularly when the landscapes included waterfalls.[2] The Cascade constitutes a prime example of the artist at the height of his technical prowess.

Jacob Salomonsz.’s works formed part of the permanent collections of the museums of Amsterdam, Brussels, Cologne, Kassel, Leipzig, London, Moscow, Nuremberg, Rotterdam, and Strasbourg.

The known provenance of The Cascade begins with “one of the most important private Hungarian collections” of the early twentieth century, that of the Royal Councillor Gustav von Gerhardt.[3] In 1911, his heirs sold the collection at auction in Berlin. Next was Otto Kuhn, a “textile mill owner who managed to put together one of the most remarkable picture collections in Brno after 1900.”[4] In 1929, after his death, Mme. Vve. Kuhn put the collection up for auction in Amsterdam. At the sale, many of the paintings were bought by other collectors from Brno, and likely, this is where Alfred and Hermine Stiassni acquired the painting.[5] Alfred also worked in the textile industry, and probably was well acquainted with Otto Kuhn and his collection. By 1938, the Ruysdael left Europe when the Stiassnis were forced to flee the Nazis. First in London in 1940, and then Los Angeles, The Cascade remained with the family as a treasured part of their past. Off the market since 1929, its re-emergence presents a rare and wonderful opportunity to acquire a monumental panel from the premiere family of landscape artists of the Dutch Golden Age.




[1] Biographical information taken from E. Benezit, “Jakob Salomonsz Ruysdael” in Dictionnaire des Peintres, Sculpteurs, Dessinateurs et Graveurs, volume 9, Libraire Gründ, Paris, 1976, p. 177; Neil MacLaren, revised Christopher Brown, “Jacob Salomonsz. van Ruysdael” in The Dutch School 1600–1900, volume I, National Gallery Publications Limited, The National Gallery, London, 1991, p. 400; and “Jacob Salomonsz. Van Ruysdael” on (RKD Explore) website.

[2] Walther Bernt, “Jakob Salomonsz. van Ruysdael” in The Netherlandish Painters of the Seventeenth Century, volume 3, Phaidon, New York, 1970, p. 101; C. Hofstede de Groot, “Jacob van Ruisdael” in A Catalogue raisonné of the works of the most eminent Dutch painters of the seventeenth century, volume 4, Somerset House, Teaneck, 1976, pp. 4-7; and Neil MacLaren, op. cit., p. 400.

[3] Bulletin du Musée hongrois des beaux-arts, no. 100-101, p. 69.

[4] “Brno Exhibition of Antique Masters from 1925 and Private Collections in Brno, 1918–1939” in Bulletin Moravske galerie v Brno, issue 55.

[5] Ibid.

Lawrence Steigrad Fine Arts

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