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Siebe Johannes Ten Cate

(1858 Sneek – 1908 Paris)

Turbulent Sea at Sunset. Watercolour on firm cardboard. 12.1 x 27.2 cm. Signed and dated “Ten Cate (18)97”.

The Dutch painter, Siebe Johannes Ten Cate, went on study trips through Europe, North America and Egypt before settling in Paris. He became known for his often symbolist-like land­scapes and urban views which were exhibited at numerous exhi­bitions, for instance those of the Munich Secession and the Société des Artistes Français in Paris.

The present seascape has been executed in a free watercolour technique with great delicacy of colouring, which betrays the influence of Vincent van Gogh and late Impressionist contemporaries. The foaming waves in the foreground are rendered calligraphically with rapid strokes of the pen. The odd sailing ship and a steamer on the horizon introduce an element of vitality into the open sea. The iridescent greenish-blue, yellow and pink shades evoke a melancholy evening mood that is imbued with symbolism.

Provenance: Paris Hôtel Drouot, Maître Desvouges, 20–21 December 1912, Dessins par Ten Cate, lot 190.

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