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Reading the News at the Weavers' Cottage

Adriaen van Ostade (Dutch, Haarlem 1610–1685 Haarlem)

Pen and brown ink, watercolor, white heightening, traces of graphite; framing lines by the artist (?) in brown ink and gold.
9 5/8 x 7 15/16 in. (24.4 x 20.2 cm)
Credit Line:
Bequest of Lore Heinemann, in memory of her husband, Dr. Rudolf J. Heinemann, 1996
Accession Number:
  • Description

    This scene of a man reading the news surrounded by family and friends within the sunlit confines of a weavers' cottage epitomizes the rustic scenes of peasant life for which Ostade is so well known. Linen weaving, a profession practiced only by men, became the most important and lucrative occupation in Haarlem in the seventeenth century. Ostade celebrated the economic profit brought about by this industry in this outstanding watercolor, an autonomous work of art, and one which remained famous through the eighteenth century.

  • Signatures, Inscriptions, and Markings

    Signature: in pen and brown ink at lower right: Av:ostade. 1673

    Inscription: verso upper right in pencil: 13
    verso lower left in pencil: 13
    verso lower left in pencil 16400-
    [label on verso of the old backing (now removed)]: A. Van Ostade / 3. Ce dessin provenant de la collection de Ploos van / Amstel, vendu en 1800, est connu sous le nom du / "liseur de gazette". Interieur d'une maison / rustique, pres de la porte, le pere en bon paysan, / assis dans son fauteuil et entoure de sa famille, / semble lire a haute voix la gazette. Col. Van / Cranenburgh / Vente Eugene Schneider, 7 Avril 1876 / Grave par Baillie.

  • Provenance

    Donor: Lore Heinemann

  • Exhibition History

    The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Drawings and Prints: Selections from the Permanent Collection," May 5, 1998–September 14, 1998.

    The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Drawings and Prints: Selections from the Permanent Collection," September 17, 2007–January 6, 2008.

    The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "The Philippe de Montebello Years: Curators Celebrate Three Decades of Acquisitions," October 24, 2008–February 1, 2009.

  • References

    Bernhard Schnackenburg Adriaen van Ostade, Isack van Ostade, Zeichnungen und Aquarelle. vols. 1 and 2, Hamburg, 1981, cat. no. 236, fig. no. vol 2, p.110, p. 127, ill.

    Carmen C. Bambach, Colta Ives, Carolyn Logan, Nadine Orenstein, Perrin Stein "Recent Acquisitions, a selection: 1997-1998." The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, vol. 56, no. 2, New York, Autumn 1998, (entry by Nadine M. Orenstein), p. 30, ill.

  • See also
    In the Museum
    Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History