Bonaventura Peeters


Oil on canvas, 54.8 x 84.8 cm

The Flemish painter Bonaventure Peters is known as the author of paintings that depict with topographical accuracy views of the Scheldt River, the North Sea, Scandinavian ports and even the city of Arkhangelsk, which allowed researchers to assume that the landscapes were based on the artist’s personal impressions. At the same time, the exotic Mediterranean views of the Middle East and, as in our case, the North African coast, which were very popular among contemporaries, are conventional, even fantastic and, most likely, written from engravings or drawings of travelers.

The painting depicts a small rocky peninsula on the coast of Morocco: Peñon de Vélez de la Gomera, which is still sovereign territory of Spain. A panoramic seascape with an illustrative plot “for viewing”, painted thinly, with translucent glazes, with carefully and detailed depictions of sea vessels and staff (fortunately, this ancient seascape has survived to this day in an excellent state of preservation). It should be noted that the painting, and this is typical for the works of the Flemish school of painting, produces a strong decorative effect.

In close compositional and stylistic proximity to our painting is: “Ships near a Mediterranean city” 1650-52, oil on wood, 65.7 x 94.5 from the Royal Museums of Fine Arts, Brussels. Inv. No. 6269.

In a private collection in the Netherlands until 1964; Gallery Nyustad, The Hague.

The painting was published in: Rheydter Jahrbuch, 26, 2002, P. 127

The painting was exhibited at the exhibition: Ein Fest der Malerei – Gemalde des 16. – 18. Jahrhunderts aus den Niderlanden und Flandern. Kunst Palace Museum, Düsseldorf, 16.07.–06.11.2005. (see label on back).​